This research project has ended. View a list of current research projects or past projects.

Key DFM Personnel

Dave Rakel, MD – Principal Investigator
Sarah Petto, MFA – Project Coordinator


Reilly Baldwin Endowment
Reeve Foundation


With its emphasis on creative self-expression, the artist-in-residence program adds a valuable dimension to the promotion of healing and wellness in the patients at UW Hospitals and Clinics (UWHC). The outcome of a pilot project in art making with patients at UWHC has shown promise as a successful model for restoring wellness in patients. Making art enlivened the hospital atmosphere, engaging patients and staff in conversations about art that translated into time given to listening to patients’ stories and concerns. This model provides a creative outlet for patients through the hands-on use of art materials.


  • To expand this model to serve more patients, applying the knowledge from the pilot project to new clinical settings.
  • To promote professional development for staff, sharing the knowledge from the pilot project and creating and supporting collaborations.
  • To generate educational outreach, sharing the knowledge from the pilot project and creating new partnerships.


This program seeks to expand this model for incorporating the arts into healthcare within the UWHC by extending it to the UW Paul P Carbone Comprehensive Cancer Center and the UWHC Surgical and Burn Units, to continue its development in the Physical Medicine and Acute Rehabilitation Unit, and to extend its impact by adapting it to clinical settings in off-campus locations. The project will meet these goals by direct service, by conducting workshops and training sessions with healthcare professionals, patients, and students, and through professional communications at regional and national conferences.