Article content

Wellbeing Through Art

Wellbeing Through Art

Join us in person or online for Wellbeing Through Art, presented by Accessible Arts and the Art Gallery of New South Wales in celebration of NSW Women’s Week 2024.

Visual artist Emma Rani Hodges, clinical psychologist Jane Miskovic-Wheatley, dancer Laura Osweiler, comedian Celia Pacquola, and the Art Gallery’s assistant curator of contemporary international art Emily Sullivan will talk about the myriad benefits of art in an engaging exploration of health, wellbeing and diverse creative expression.

The event will be held at the Art Gallery and also livestreamed.

For the in-person sensory-friendly event, no bookings are required. Entry will be granted to the first 200 people to arrive.

For the accessible livestream, registrations are essential.

Where and When

Wednesday 6 March
6pm – 8pm
Networking 8pm – 9pm (in person only)

Join in person:
Art Gallery of NSW – North Building
Meers Hall, Lower Level 2

For details on how to get to this event and what to expect, check out the Visual Story.

For more information about Access Support at the Art Gallery of NSW, please click here.

Or join online:
Registrations are essential for the accessible livestream of this event.

Click here to register


This sensory-friendly event will be Auslan interpreted, captioned and is wheelchair accessible.
The in-person event at the Art Gallery will be open captioned.
The livestream will be closed captioned.

Auslan interpreting icon opening captioning iconClosed Caption symbol



Trigger warning: This event contains reference to mental health conditions which may be triggering for some people.

If you wish to discuss your access requirements for this event, please email or phone (02) 9251 6499.

This is part of a series of accessible events at the Art Gallery on 6 March including a sensory friendly Art After Hours and drop-in workshop.

About the Speakers

Emma Rani Hodges
Emma is a neurodivergent artist who lives and works on the unceded lands of the Ngunnawal and Ngambri peoples. Their practice explores intergenerational trauma, mental illness, migration and multiethnic identity. They do this through mixed media textile installations and acts of storytelling. Fluctuating between image, text and object, Hodges’s work resists easy categorisation. They use ambiguous materiality to examine social boundaries and to explore feelings of ‘otherness’. Hodges’s work utilises their feelings of otherness to create new self-knowledge while acknowledging that the existence of the ‘other’ depends on specific political conditions that influence relationships between marginalised bodies and society. 

Celia Pacquola, Comedian
Celia Pacquola is a versatile and beloved entertainer, excelling as a stand-up comedian, writer, and actor on both stage and screen. Her comedic talents have earned her two Melbourne Comedy Festival Award Most Outstanding Show nominations, along with wins for Edinburgh’s Amused Moose and the Helpmann Awards. TV audiences would know Celia from her appearances on ‘Spicks and Specks’, ‘The Project’ and most frequently ‘Have You Been Paying Attention?’. In 2016 Celia co-created, co-wrote and starred in the smash hit comedy ‘Rosehaven’ with Luke McGregor for ABC-TV and in 2023, Celia was announced as new host of Network 10’s iconic show ‘Thank God You’re Here’. 

Laura Osweiler, Dancer
Dr. Laura (Amara) Osweiler is an internationally renowned dancer, choreographer, teacher, producer and scholar from the USA now in Sydney, Cammeraygal land. As a Classic American belly dance and MENAHT folk dancer, Laura has performed as a soloist and in dance companies. She’s held long-term engagements in Los Angeles, Las Vegas and Austin. For 15 years, Laura was the Director of Ya Helewa! Dance Company and regularly collaborates with dancers, dance/theatre companies, musicians and artists. Her current works interweave dance, movement, film, music, audio description and health and employs communication technologies to support access and engage with audiences in different locations.   

Emily Sullivan, Curator

Emily Sullivan is assistant curator, contemporary international art at the Art Gallery of NSW and assistant curator of the exhibition ‘Louise Bourgeois: Has the Day Invaded the Night or Has the Night Invaded the Day?’ 2023. Recent projects include ‘Dreamhome: Stories of Art and Shelter’ with Justin Paton and Lisa Catt, and she was previously curator, Kaldor Public Art Projects. Emily holds an MA in Curating and Cultural Leadership from UNSW Art & Design, Sydney, and has studied at Sotheby’s Institute of Art, London.

Jane Miskovic-Wheatley, Clinical Psychologist
Jane has a lifetime passion for the performing arts and over 20 years’ experience across various aspects of live theatre and events, including choreographic direction for many national and international events such as Olympic, Commonwealth, Asian and Pan American Opening Ceremonies. In contrast, she has been a clinical psychologist in private and public practice for over a decade. Her professional interests fused and she is now an industry leader in mental health for creative and performing arts, providing treatment services for performing arts practitioners, training and support for some of Australia’s leading arts organisations, and advocacy for mental wellbeing in creative practice. She holds postgraduate degrees from the University of Sydney and the National Institute of Dramatic Art.

Jane works from the lands of the Darug and Gundungurra People with respect and honour to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Elders past, present and future. She also acknowledges the individual and collective experience of those with lived and living experiences of mental health concerns and those who love and care for them. As a member of the lived experience community, her work remains committed to elevating different perspectives and experiences. Our stories give us strength, please keep sharing them.

This event has been made possible by the NSW Government, Women NSW in collaboration with the Premier’s Department NSW.


Image description: Headshots of the speakers, from left to right: Emily Sullivan (photo by Felicity Jenkins), Laura Osweiler (photo by Chris Laudermilk), Celia Pacquola, Emma Rani Hodges and Jane Miskovic-Wheatley.

NSW Government Logo       Art Gallery of New South Wales logo