Art Therapy at the Henry Ford Cancer Institute

art therapy paintings
Examples of Art Therapy paintings from patient classes.

Do you enjoy toiling over an oil canvas or simply doodling on the corner of a page?

Research suggests that creating art has powerful healing properties- because art connects your mind and your body. Unlike exercise, which works your body, or meditation, which clears your mind, making a piece of art uses both, which has major health benefits. Every time you sit down to write a song or paint a picture, you’re using mental processes in a physically engaging activity. Art therapy directs this creative healing process inward to explore yourself and come to a deeper connection and understanding of who you are.

Art Therapy Benefits

art therapy cancer patient group painting at west bloomfield
Art Therapy patients painting at Henry Ford West Bloomfield.

When a patient works with an art therapist or intern, they can expect to see the same benefits as traditional talk therapy. In cancer care, we focus on several goals. You may experience the following benefits:

  • Relaxation
  • Self-expression
  • Promotion of creative thinking and problem solving
  • Coping skills for diagnosis related depression, anxiety, fear, and suffering
  • Feeling more hopeful
  • Provide sense of control

A chronic illness diagnosis can cause you to go through different types of trauma:

  • Grief over a changing identity or body
  • Fears about recurrence, surgery, and death

Art therapists try to help you relieve these mental, emotional, and spiritual concerns by providing activities that touch your internal feelings with more than just words.

art therapy cancer patient group painting
Art Therapy patients painting at Henry Ford Macomb.

Find Art Therapy Near You

  • Detroit Art Therapy Support Group
    Find dates and times
  • Detroit Hospital Infusion Room
    Tuesdays, Thursdays and Fridays 9:00am - 5:00pm
  • Henry Ford Cancer Institute - Brownstown
    Guided by nationally acclaimed local artist Patricia Izzo, cancer patients and survivors can create their own acrylic paint on canvas masterpiece. Please call to reserve your spot as space is limited: (734) 479-3311.
  • Macomb Art Therapy Support Group with the Lake House
    Find dates and times
  • Macomb Hospital Infusion Room
    Mondays and Wednesdays 9:00am - 4:00pm
  • West Bloomfield Hospital Art Open Studio
    Find dates and times

bee project from art therapy
A fun fall project with the Macomb Art Therapy Group.

What people are saying about Henry Ford Cancer Institute’s Art Therapy Program

  • “Art therapy has been very helpful. I will participate again when I come in for my next chemo session. I was very comfortable with the therapist and her approach, the program, and her deep insight. I am anxious to share again. I needed this!” – patient, Henry Ford Hospital
  • “The therapist is nice and understanding of different situations. I love how she listens to you and with you one-to-one. This program is great, wonderful!” – patient, Henry Ford Macomb Hospital
  • “This program is so relaxing. I enjoyed it a lot. Thank you!” – patient, West Bloomfield Hospital
  • “With this program I felt really calm and good about coming to chemo. I looked forward to it every two weeks.” – patient, Henry Ford Hospital
  • “During my first chemo session I had a reaction to the chemo and was so distraught. The therapist was like a breath of sunshine to my children and me. I look forward to seeing her at each chemo session. I am truly grateful the Henry Ford offers this program. Love! Love! Love!” – patient, Henry Ford Hospital

Mallory Montgomery art therapy teacher

Art Therapy Team

Mallory Montgomery, MS, ATR
Art Therapist

Fast Facts about Mallory:

  • BA in Fine Arts and Neuropsychology, Alma College, 2014
  • MS in Art Therapy and Clinical Counseling, Mount Mary University
  • Started working at Henry Ford Cancer Institute - Macomb, 2017
  • Expanded the Henry Ford Cancer Institute Art Therapy program to include individual and group therapy at Henry Ford Detroit Main Hospital, and group support therapy for cancer patients, survivors, and caregivers at Henry Ford West Bloomfield, 2018
  • Specializes in healing art therapy services for creative self-expression, personal growth, and relaxation

A Special Thank You

Thank you to our clients, caregivers and loved ones who have supported the Art Therapy Program. Special thanks to our grant funder, The Zoe Foundation for Infusion Art Therapy, whose generous grants provide services at Henry Ford Macomb Hospital and Henry Ford Hospital in Detroit.

You can get involved through donations of art supplies, volunteering or monetary gifts. Art supply donations are received at Macomb and Detroit Hospital locations during class times. Visit our volunteer section to learn about ways you can participate in the program. To care it forward with a gift please call/email the development office to help make a difference (313) 876-1031 or

celtic knot 2

Colleen's Corner: Local and National Resources

Online Resources

  • Psychology Today: The Expressive Therapies Continuum, specialized training that guides an art therapist to help safely explore who you are together

  • Art As Therapy: What’s the difference between the Art Class you took in grade school and Art Therapy? A lot actually!

Learn More About Our Resources

Connect with our Cancer Team 24/7

Call us at (888) 777-4167

Schedule Appointment Online

** Check with your insurance carrier for coverage limitations.

If you can't find a date/time that works for you please call the provider’s office. Not all appointment types at all locations are available online.

Henry Ford Health System is committed to ensuring our Deaf or hard-of-hearing patients and visitors have equal access to all services. We provide the appropriate auxiliary aids and services, including qualified sign language interpreters, TTYs and other assistive listening devices, at no cost. To request assistance, call 313-916-1896 or email

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