At the end of 2018, Art Fund published a report demonstrating the importance of participating in creative activities. They emphasised that 'people need places where they can relax, learn, contemplate and wander.'

We have always believed that art has the power to make you feel good, reducing stress and allowing the mind to focus and relax. That’s why we work hard to develop a varied programme of exhibitions, talks and tours, events and workshops.

The study by Art Fund highlighted two areas that impact our happiness: how we use our time, and how stressed we feel. The results of the report suggested that we would all benefit from finding 30 minutes a day to do something that makes us feel good.

In the New Year, many of us seek to improve our ways of living by cutting out unhealthy foods or hitting the gym – but how many of us make the New Year’s Resolution to simply take a break from it all and do something fun? According to Art Fund, 'millions of people value their free time as an opportunity to relax and escape from the stresses of modern-day life. But as a nation, we’re overwhelmed by life’s pressures.'

While not always easy to do, finding the time to take a break from the pressures of everyday life can help to lift our moods. Some people like to go for a walk and get some fresh air. Others listen to music or go shopping. Galleries and museums provide a sense of calm, whilst also stimulating and inspiring our minds.

The findings of the study suggested that almost two thirds (63%) of us have visited a gallery or museum, but few (6%) do this regularly (at least once a month). Those regular attendees reported a higher sense of satisfaction with their lives than those who had never visited a gallery or museum – as well as greater levels of fulfilment in what they do.

See Art Fund's full 'Calm and Collected' report here.

Friends enjoying an exhibition, 'Calm and Collected' report © Art Fund

At The Lightbox, we offer a varied programme of events, talks and workshops alongside our exhibitions, in an attempt to help people to learn new skills and discover more about art, whilst providing moments of calm to reflect and relax.

Free drawing sessions around the galleries are a great way to relax and switch-off, whilst monthly Saturday morning workshops mean that attendees can learn a new craft or develop existing skills with help from a professional artist.

Alongside our belief that art helps improve one's wellbeing, we also believe that art is for everyone. That’s why we have a dedicated programme of community projects, from creative sessions for those living with dementia and their carers, to relaxing art classes in partnership with the York Road Project. Every time you book onto one of our workshops, talks or events, you are directly supporting The Lightbox charity and these projects.

Find out more about how you can support us here.