Current wellness theory emphasizes the great importance of reducing toxicity, coupled with the yield of art and play to stimulate learning. Jimmy Santiago Baca’s memoir, A Place to Stand, illustrates both the negative consequences of toxic environs, as well as vivid illustration of pathways out. As artists like Beth Campbell have shown, Baca’s memoir credits art as part of his educational opportunity, an insight often missed when the range of wellness is discussed, and this can foster the best education. In showing that health is inextricably connected to one’s learning, art is a powerful pathway towards healing. This article will pedagogically demonstrate how to engage with art and wellness in its analysis of Jimmy Santiago Baca’s memoir, A Place to Stand. I view Baca’s memoir through the lens of Jamner and Stokols’ work on preventative behavior and reducing toxicity in the life domains home, social settings, commute, and education). Further, this article will connect the exploration of Beth Campbell’s artwork, My Potential Future Based on Present Circumstances as a model for generating conscious actions. Thus, the embodiment of positive holistic growth through art is a method for wellness to thrive.



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