Hope and Healing Art Contest

March 1, 2016

Why does art inspire hope and healing? 

A study by Roger S Ulrich, Ph.D., a behavioural scientist who conducts research on the effects of healthcare facilities on medical outcomes, found that patients who looked out of a hospital room to a view of nature went home at least one day sooner than those who looked at a brick wall. In addition, the patients with a view of nature needed fewer doses of pain medication. Research continues to show that individuals with access to views of nature, art or visual images are less stressed and anxious, and more hopeful and optimistic. The calming and healing benefits of nature and art also extend to the artist, families and passers-by.

Why art is needed when we are trying to heal?

  • Art, especially green landscapes and water scenes, friendly faces, and cultural artifacts, distract people to think about something else other than their pain.
  • Art shows that life is beautiful and opens the mind to new possibilities by creating optimism. Familiar scenes bring back happy memories. Unfamiliar scenes can create a sense of wonder or desire to see more.
  • Art helps us see how we are connected and similar to others across culture or history. Mothers have always cuddles their children and landscapes provide beautiful places of comfort.




Donate your original art that promotes hope and healing communicating a message of peace, calm, comfort and inspiration. Entrants must complete the attached Entrant Release Form, which must include an art work title and inspiration statement, of not more than 150 words, on how the art communicates that message to viewers. We cannot accept art that features trademarked logo or features individuals other that the artist. Art that does not follow these instructions can be returned and will not be part of the Art Show. 



Important Dates and Deadlines

April 15, 2016 Final date for submissions. All art must arrive at Embrace Life Council’s office by this date in order to be considered for the judging.

May 2, 2016 Winners will be announced and prizes awarded.



All art submitted will be displayed at a show at Inuksuk High School in Iqaluit during Mental Health Week, May 2-8, 2016. Subsequent to the art show, selected artwork will be displayed in and around Embrace Life Council office, located in Iqaluit’s W.G. Brown Building, and in places of healing (health centres, counselling offices, etc.) in various Nunavut communities.


Artists Invited to Participate

Youth ages 14-19. Prizes will be awarded in two categories: Ages 14-16 and 17-19. Once submitted, all art becomes the possession of the Embrace Life Council.



  • To inspire hope and healing by raising awareness that art aids in healing
  • To create art for hospitals and healing facilities where viewers seek inspiration to heal
  • To provide students with opportunities to explore creativity and create art to help others


Art Medium

Two-dimensional artwork that can be hung on a wall is accepted. It may include painting, photography, mixed media, textile, fabric, fur, etc. It may not include glass or fragile material.


Size and Finishing

Horizontal or vertical art must not be larger than 16″x20″ and a depth not to exceed 2″.  It cannot be smaller than 8.5″x 11″. Painting on canvas must have the sides painted. Art must be ready to hang. 


 Judging Criteria 

  • Artist’s interpretation and ability to visually communicate a message of hope and healing to the viewer
  • Creativity, technical skills and craftsmanship
  • Ability to communicate a compelling inspiration statement



A panel of judges with a an expertise in arts and/or healthcare will select the winning entries. First prize in each age category will receive $300; second prize will receive $200; third prize will receive $100; honourable mention will receive $50.


Submit your entries directly or through local RCMP

If you live in Iqaluit, your entry may be delivered directly to Embrace Life Council’s office on the first floor of the W.G. Brown Building. Ensure you include your signed release form.

If you live outside of Iqaluit, avoid shipping/mailing costs by dropping your entry off at your local RCMP detachment between the hours of 8am to 4pm. The RCMP will forward your entry to Embrace Live Council in Iqaluit. Ensure you include your signed release form.

If you choose to ship by mail, please send all entries to:

Embrace Life Council Art Contest
P.O. Box 2259
Iqaluit, NU
X0A 0H0