Despite us being apart, the Creative Arts Interest Group has still been dedicated to continuing the popular Art Show turning it into a virtual event for all to enjoy. With the Art Show coming up, I had the pleasure of chatting with two members of the Creative Arts Interest Group, Amy Lee (Med 2) and Navjit Singh (Med 1), to discuss the importance of the arts and the upcoming Art Show.
What is the Creative Arts Interest Group?
Amy explained the aim of the Interest Group stating, “The Creative Arts Interest Group is a group of Med 1 and Med 2 students who are all really interested in art or music or writing, and they just want to come together to share that love of art and creativity with all the other students.”
The Interest Group has hosted multiple events throughout the year highlighting the various types of art including Christmas carolling in December, letters of advice to the Med 1s, and their biggest event, the Art Show.
“…the Art Show is the one main event where everyone comes together. We get all the students, faculty, [and] some community members to submit art and share in the creativity together.”
Do you think the arts are important in medicine? Why or why not?
Navjit expressed that she felt art was not only important for our well-being outside of medicine, but also an important component of being a medical student and successful future physicians. She explains , “Well yes, not just because we’re a part of the group, but just because [physicians] always talk about the art of medicine and whether it is art that you’re doing or something else it can get creative juices flowing. Like that creativity can overlap with that care you provide and sometimes it takes that creativity and thinking outside the box to reach a diagnosis on a patient and to think a little more abstract as well, and I think having an artistic mind or an artistic hobby can help with that.”
Can you explain the theme for this year’s Art Show “The Future is Now”? What inspired this choice in theme?
Amy stated that they wanted the theme to be one that everyone could connect with and put their own spin on explaining, “…We brainstormed some things that are both relevant to medicine and art and that can be interpreted in a variety of ways [from a] more literal interpretation [to] more abstract.”
Navjit also shared her interpretation of the theme as well as some of the ideas she’s heard from colleagues. “The way I think we kind of interpreted the theme is it would be more about like advancing technology and how that’s progressing, whether it’s good or bad, and how it’s affecting the state of medicine currently. But I know talking to other classmates about the theme they’ve interpreted differently to [this] meaning. I think one of my classmates is working on an art piece that’s more about climate change, which is not an interpretation we had but I think it’s still great that you can interpret the theme whichever way you want and it still works… I think that’s the great thing about art, you can interpret it however you want and it’s not wrong in any way because it’s your interpretation.”
Amy shared this sentiment and encouraged everyone to take their own spin on the theme stating, “We’re open to all interpretations. We want people to get creative with it and do what they want with it.”
How does this theme connect to medicine or why is it important? How does it connect to us as medical students?
Amy provided one interpretation stating, “I guess now with technology making a big boom and everything I think there’s a lot of evolution that can happen in medicine… So I feel like this serves as a way for students to think about what can we do with this technology, how can it work in medicine, can it even make headway in the first place…”
“I remember when we started learning about radiology they kept talking about hand held ultrasound, like is that going to happen this decade? I think we’re in an exciting time where a lot can happen in medicine, either for the good or for the bad, we don’t know yet,” supplied Navjit.
Navjit also continued with an explanation of how we in particular as medical students embody this theme stating, “I think more of a non-technological interpretation of the theme would be [that we] as students are the future… and not even what techniques we have or anything like that, but just even our ethics [and] our perspectives. I think our generation compared to past generations is more open and understanding… So I definitely think the future is now, and us being the future, [it’s important to think about] what can we do to be the best physicians we can be just based on who we are as people.”
“…We’re starting to be more involved with [advocacy] in our generation and breaking down the stigma is such a big thing for us just to be more open and vocal about that… We have the power to shape where we want medicine and health care to go so I think that’s [an] important thing to consider,” added Amy.
What are you anticipating in terms of submissions for this year’s art show?
“I know a lot of people are obviously doing paintings… but I’m hoping to see other mediums there as well like written work… I think we had also talked about trying to emphasize doing other things like music or like photography and other things like that; and hopefully submissions from different levels too. We’ve been sending [the advertisement] to HSC to try to get doctors [involved]. I think we did get an email from an internist or something, so we’re hoping to get more than just students involved,” stated Navjit.
Traditionally, the Interest Group has collaborated with kids involved with Art City, a non-profit organization that provides community members with the opportunity to participate in various art programs free of charge, to create the centerpiece for the Art Show as well as providing some health-related education. Some of the projects they had completed for previous events include creating a large pair of eyeballs and a model heart. In addition, the kids are able to create their own creations to submit and are invited to the Show. Hopefully we will be able to see these kids’ amazing creations next year!
Thank you so much to the Creative Arts Interest Group for all their hard work with this year’s Art Show, especially with the changes to create a virtual event where everyone’s work can be showcased for others to enjoy. It’s amazing to know that despite these times, we are still able to come together and share our talents in various ways. If you are interested in submitting a piece for the Art Show, you can do so through this link: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSfR3lvwre6LFNpmYgp1auJxJLXDFcu6Mnalv7vBSyLqK9zSFg/viewform. If you are interested in learning more about Art City, visit their website at https://artcityinc.com. Stay well!