University of California San Francisco
Helen Diller Family Comprehensive Cancer Center

Art Support Groups

Art Support Groups are funded in part by The Auxiliary at UCSF Mount Zion Medical Center and the many generous friends of Art For Recovery.


Creative Wellbeing: Expressive Arts & Mindfulness Group

Facilitated by Jena Leake, PhD, Registered Expressive Arts Therapist

Explore creative ways to cultivate wellbeing, self-care and resilience. We will engage in simple art-making, writing and mindfulness practices to help us navigate the challenges and uncertainties we are living. Each session will include a time for personal reflection, creative expression, group sharing, and mindful practices to support wellbeing in everyday life. No previous art experience necessary. We encourage you to work with simple materials, such as pen and paper or a small selection of your favorite art mediums.

Healing with Writing: An Online Writing Workshop

Facilitated by Ned Buskirk, MA, Writer, Art for Recovery

This writing workshop offers adult cancer survivors a chance to express themselves through writing, exploring themes of hope, gratitude, healing, & peace. It's a chance to connect to community, to remember we’re not alone, and to tap into our innate wisdom, knowing, and understanding to creatively face our unique experiences of life. No writing experience required.

HeART & Soul: Expressive Arts Group

Facilitated by Amy Van Cleve, Program Manager, Art for Recovery & Mary Watson, Art for Recovery Musician

In this on-line art studio, we’ll gather weekly in a supportive community to explore art-making, writing and creative strategies for living with cancer. Each session will include a time for personal reflection, expressive art-making and group sharing. This group is for anyone interested in exploring creative expression for healing, peer support and self-care. There will be lots of freedom to experiment with artful projects while working with whatever art materials you have available in your home – even if it’s just a pen and paper. No artistic or writing experience necessary – just an open heart to create and connect.

Musical Meditation

Tuesdays, July 14, 21 & 28 (1:30 – 2:30 pm)
On-Line via Zoom, drop In for one or more sessions

Join healing harpist, Patrice Haan, for a musical journey of rest and rejuvenation. Let the music be your guide to recharge your body, mind and spirt. Patients and staff are welcome to drop in at any time during the hour to enjoy this musical oasis of self-care.

Open Art Studio

Facilitated by Amy Van Cleve, Clinical Artist, Manager Art for Recovery

This group is an opportunity to explore deep feelings of anger, loss, pain and hope through music, creativity and peer support. No artistic skill is required. This group is an opportunity for you to share your story. Experience the lives and stories of others as well as to support each other creatively.

Serenade Series

Wednesdays, 11 am – 12 pm
On-Line via Zoom, Drop In for one or more sessions

Enjoy musical storytelling with Jim Murdoch. With 20+ years of playing music for patients at UCSF, Jim’s Serenade Series is an invitation to connect with others through music. We welcome you to sing along, bring your own instrument to play, or simply to tune in and listen at your leisure.

Wild Writing

Facilitated by Laurie Wagner, Writer, Art for Recovery

Write authentically and freely in this supportive on-line community. We’ll explore the stories we are living as we write in response to poetic prompts, discovering how to let go of our inner critic and write from the heart of our daily experiences. No writing experience necessary.

Individual Expressive Arts Sessions

Scheduled by Appointment - Online via Zoom