Art and Medicine

Studio Italia as an elective university course

Painting workshop Tuscany
Elizabeth in front of her final works (done in 2 days)

During our recent workshop in Tuscany we were delighted to have among our participants, Elizabeth Chan, a medical student from the National University of Singapore, who obtained approval to register for Studio Italia as a credited elective course. At Walk the Arts we were very happy with the University’s recognition of our program which includes 6 hours of art theory|history and 40 hours of painting instruction.

While Elizabeth has a deep vocation to medicine, she has found a source of joy in fine arts which has been her passion since she was a child. It is very interesting to realize how a scientific mind finds relief when tapping into the creative mind. As she states, a new self comes alive when she picks up a paintbrush. For her, immersing in art reduces her stress and also helps her to release her emotions opening her mind to new emotions and ideas she was not consciously aware.

We asked her why she chose Studio Italia as an elective course. Here are her words. “On the surface, science and art seem like such polar opposites. Digging deeper, there are so many interconnections between the two, and this is so apparent in Medicine. Medicine is about the science of the human body as much as it is about the art of human nature and human connection. I came here wanting to learn about art so that I can apply it to the way I learn and practise Medicine in the future; to be able to think creatively, “push the envelope”, and connect with people the way art facilitates. There were definitely more selfish reasons for choosing a painting tour as my elective (instead of a hospital attachment) like unwinding after a long year of school and steep learning curve in the hospital wards. It was a gift to be able to do that, but learn so much about life, art and myself at the same time”.

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