Yuko Taniguchi – Creative Activities for Healing

On Thursday, April 27, 2023, Origami Spirit Membership hosted an interview with Yuko Taniguchi, assistant professor of Medicine and Arts, at the Center for Learning Innovation, University of Minnesota, Rochester.

A poet and novelist, Yuko regularly collaborates with artists and healthcare professionals to explore how creative activities lead to self-discovery and healing.

Between 2018 and 2020 Yuki conducted research into how creativity, specifically creative writing and origami, had a positive impact on adolescents between the ages of 12-18 who were hospitalized in an acute-care inpatient psychiatric hospital setting. The title of her paper is “Utilizing Creativity for Adolescents’ Recovery in Inpatient Psychiatric Hospital (IPH)”.

Yuko Taniguchi is the author of a volume of poetry, Foreign Wife Elegy (2004), and a novel, The Ocean in the Closet (2007), both published by Coffee House Press.

In the following segment––excerpted from the hour-long conversation––Yuko talks about how origami can be helpful as an aid to falling asleep. To introduce this concept, Yuko reads her poem Pretty Pink Paper Pig Penelope. In addition to this interview, you might also be interested in the following posts referencing the health benefits of origami.

YouTube player

Full interview available to Origami Spirit Members

Visit Yuko Taniguchi’s WEBSITE and INSTAGRAM

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From the project Healing Garden
From the project Sleep Mantra

“Creativity is a space inside us. It’s an open field that invites us to run around freely, extend our arms randomly, explore the things that call our attention, capture our stories in ways that only we can, and share the stories to connect with others. Everyone has such a field inside.” ~Yuko Taniguchi


2 thoughts on “Yuko Taniguchi – Creative Activities for Healing”

  1. That is so interesting. I have been living with Dystonia since 2009. When I close my eyes, relax or lie down my upper body is twisting, which makes sleeping very difficult at times.
    I use to meditate so my life changed dramatically as you might imagine.
    I have noticed that if I can get my mind to move away from my body my head will sometimes stop twisting and I am magically in another place, then eventually in sleep.
    Doing this exercise will be a wonderful experiment for me to try.
    Thank you, with love,


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