Turner Prize – inspiring wellbeing


Burnout in healthcare – how getting creative can help

This autumn, the Turner Prize 2019 is coming to Margate. Every other year the Prize moves from Tate Britain to a regional venue and this year it’s coming to the Turner Contemporary art gallery Margate, Kent.  Four of the most exciting contemporary artists working today have been shortlisted for the prize and will have their work exhibited, with the winner announced in December 2019.

So what connects the Turner Prize with employee wellbeing in healthcare?

Both the Turner Prize and Turner Contemporary take their name from the artist JMW Turner (1775 – 1851), who was an innovative, radical and controversial artist in his day. He is now seen as one of the greatest British artists. Turner became a regular visitor to Margate and sought inspiration from the area declaring the skies over Thanet,  ‘the loveliest in all Europe”.   

Turner created more than 550 oil paintings, 2000 watercolours and 30,000 works on paper.  Not every work was a major masterpiece.

Now in 2019, the Turner Prize and Turner’s Margate can inspire creativity, ingenuity, perseverance and pausing for thought. To Think Like An Artist is not be afraid of failure. To be curious about the world we live in, to have opinion about what is important.

The arts can provide additional perspective to the sciences. Coming together to experience the Turner Prize exhibition can allow healthcare employees time to think about healthcare practices and priorities. We are all artists, we all can be brave, and enterprising. Confidence to create is crucial. Artists don’t ask permission to paint, write, act or sing. They just do it.

Drawing on the creative and intellectual strengths of creative disciplines including literature, art, creative writing, drama, music and photography, Expressions of Medical Creativity will inspire self-reflection, inner strength and confidence to continuously self-improve and create. Having this courage and self-understanding can help individuals to change their own and other’s behaviours allowing positive cultures to develop in healthcare systems under pressure. Experts in medical education and medical humanities will inspire you in 2020.

Visiting the Turner Prize and indulging in creativity for wellbeing is an experience not to be missed.

Think Like An Artist – Will Gompertz (2015) Penguin Random House, UK. ISBN: 978-0-241-97080-5