More cases show skills tied to art can survive brain illness
Aug. 23, 2013Courtesy of St. Michael's Hospitaland World Science staff
The ability to draw spontaneously and from memory may persist in the brains of artists afflicted with dementia that reduces their ability to perform daily tasks, according to a new study.
“Art opens the mind,” said Luis Fornazzari, neurological consultant at St. Michael’s Hospital’s Memory Clinic in Toronto and lead author of a paper on the findings. “Art should be taught to everyone,” he added. “It’s better than many medications and is as important as mathematics or history.”
Fornazzari and colleagues studied the last few years of the late Mary Hecht, an internationally renowned sculptor, who was able to draw spurofthe moment and detailed sketches of faces and figures, including from memory, despite an advanced case of dementia.