Since the emergence of Positive Psychology in 1998, there is a growing body of evidence suggesting a positive correlation between wellbeing and arts engagement on both individual and community level. More particularly, the common perception of museums and galleries as serious spaces bound by rules and regulations has been challenged in recent years, especially through their specific programmes designed to improve the wellbeing of children and young people.
Richmond’s one-day conference will reflect on these recent phenomena and their implications; furthermore, the benefits of arts participation to the wellbeing of adults and communities will be explored, within a Positive Psychology theoretical framework. How do art galleries and museums contribute to positive wellbeing and the development of character strengths such as resilience or creativity? How can arts engagement build thriving, resilient communities? This conference brings together six academics, psychologists, museum professionals and play specialists in order to discuss these important issues.