Led by Arts for Health Cornwall, the Home Service is a three-year programme of activity bringing great art to older people in care homes funded by Arts Council England and The Baring Foundation.

For year one (2014 /15) artist Jonty Lees immersed himself into the routine of Crossroads House, in Scorrier, which specialises in dementia care. For one day every week over a period of three months, Lees spent time getting to know the residents and staff, and was quick to appreciate the importance of tea and conversation in the life of the home. With this in mind Lees commissioned Staffordshire ceramicist Reiko Keneko to produce a set of cups and saucers each printed with a single word, free from context, to act as a visual trigger. Lees tested out potential words using flashcards and chose 100 which inspired the most reaction, from sausage to conkers.

Each Breath Is Valuable
An evaluation of an arts in care homes programme, prepared for the Baring Foundation and Arts Council England as funders of the programme.

Read freelance Arts and Health Consultant Jayne E Howard’s article Something remains for us to do or dare Cultural entitlement in older age

The article was published in issue 39 of engage, the international journal of visual art and gallery education.