Art & Epilepsy
This web site is associated with a study called "Sparks of Creativity: The Influences of Epilepsy in Visual Art." This study of epilepsy and art was divided into three parts. The first was for insights into the creative process and whether epilepsy can enhance creative potential. The second regarded how the artworks and statements of people with epilepsy could be used to help diagnose and understand epilepsy for a medical perspective. The third is the Creative Sparks Art and Epilepsy Project that consists of this web site, art exhibition, and efforts to bring about a better understanding of epilepsy and the people who have it that reaches all audiences.
This study as of 14 February 2012 had 122 volunteers with epilepsy or migraines that trigger seizures. Many of their family members participated in the study as a comparison group. The results of this research have been presented at the International Epilepsy Congress in Rome in August or 2011 and to other research organisations, such as Harvard Medical School in December of 2012. The PhD thesis of Jim Chambliss that led to this web site is currently in the writing up stage. The results will most likely be published in late 2012 or 2013.
The results indicate that there is a significant increase in creative potential for people with focal epilepsy in comparison to their family members. There is also a significant increase in creative potential and productivity correlated to the frequency and variety of transient experiences associated with epilepsy.
The next stage of the research will be focused on the insights into epilepsy and migraine auras that can be gained from visual art.
We want to thank everyone who participated in or supported this academic research and related projects.
For more information on this study please refer to the Sparks of Creativity Blog.