ARTISAN: Fostering Aspirations and Resilience among Seniors

ARTISAN: Fostering Aspirations and Resilience Through Intergenerational Storytelling and Art-based Narratives

Project ARTISAN brings together seniors and youths on a journey of intergenerational storytelling and creative art-making under the skylights of museum and community spaces. ARTISAN – which stands for Aspiration and Resilience Through Inter-generational Storytelling and Art-based Narratives – comprise a holistic and intricately structured multimodal intervention framework that builds resilience and creates meaningful connections between the two generations. ARTISAN aspires to instill positive and impact changes in participants’ lives, with the ultimate goal of citizen empowerment for overcoming loneliness.

Over five weeks in the early summer of 2018, thirty-four pairs of youth-senior dyads engaged in a series of curated tours at the National Museum, to understand Singapore’s heritage, how people in the past have forged relational bonds, the resilience they displayed while overcoming adversities, and how they realised their dreams and aspirations. The youth-senior dyads were then provided with the opportunity to reflect and share their personal stories of love, courage and resilience through artistic expressions and creative writing. Their art based narratives were shared with members of the public during a series of mini community exhibitions held in May and June 2018, as well as through the ARTISAN Exhibition at the National Museum during the 2018 National Day Open House event on 9 August 2018.

A new grant proposal “ARTISAN: A National Study on Citizen Empowerment to Overcoming Loneliness through Arts and Heritage” has recently been submitted to the 2018 Social Science Research Thematic Grant. This new initiative aims to expand and implement the ARTISAN intervention framework across 6 major museums and galleries across Singapore via a Waitlist Randomized Controlled Trial with 400 seniors and 400 youths, while developing an ARTISAN Facilitator Training and Mentorship Programme to empower 200 health and social care professionals to advance societal-wide implementation of ARTISAN beyond research completion, as well as establishing a digital achieve named “Stories Connect” that house and disseminate the unique personal life stories of ARTISAN participants with educational tools to support local Heritage and Value Education programmes.

Project ARTISAN is a project developed by the Action Research for Community Health (ARCH Lab), Nanyang Technological University of Singapore in collaboration with the National Arts Council and the National Museum of Singapore.”

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