Nancy Tingey



Over a period of forty years Nancy Tingey has established a varied career in the visual arts working as a curator and teacher in national and regional institutions, as well as exhibiting her textiles, paintings and works on paper in Australia and England. 

In 2005-6 she was a visiting tutor at the Canberra and Norwich Schools of Art and held solo shows at Ruskin Museum, Coniston; Percy House Gallery, Cockermouth; Black Swan Arts, Frome, Somerset; The Edge Gallery, Lancaster; The Barbican, London, and Michaelhouse, Cambridge, UK.

From 1971 until 1999 Nancy lived in Australia. After 7 years back in England she resettled in Australia in October 2006. In March 2007 two solo exhibitions of her work were held in Canberra. 

Time Out at Watson Arts Centre reviewed her overseas experience while Two Ply (Craft ACT) focused on her needle-felted textiles, digital imagery and film work from her MA project which explores the issues arising from living in two cultures.

Nancy continues her art practice at her studio at Strathnairn Arts, Canberra ACT.


Program founder

Nancy Tingey founded the TPwP program in 1994 to combine her role as a community artist and art curator with caring for her husband Bob who had been diagnosed with Parkinson's in 1987 at the age of 46. 

In 1996 she was awarded a Churchill Fellowship to study art as a therapy for Parkinson's and travelled to Italy, Switzerland, Holland, England, Scotland, Canada and USA.

During the following 4 years through lectures, publications, television and radio, groups using the program methodology were established in Adelaide, Hobart and Melbourne. 

Twenty exhibitions were curated in Canberra, three travelling to Perth, Hobart and New Zealand. The brief was extended to include sculpture, silk-painting, printmaking, yoga, T'ai Chi and sound and music therapy.



2002  Publication of the book Arts Therapies and Progressive Illness - Nameless Dread - chapter contribution

2018  Author of the book Magic Happens - the story of Painting with Parkinsons

This full colour 100+ page book records the first 23 years of the innovative TPwP program  devised and coordinated in Canberra, Australia, by artist Nancy Tingey.

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Excerpt from Magic Happens - the story of Painting with Parkinsons:

"In 2006 I was invited to present a paper at the international First World Parkinson Congress in Washington DC, hosted by the Parkinson’s Disease Foundation USA. A highlight of the conference program was a museum quality exhibition of art work created by people living with Parkinson’s, selected from 14 countries across the world and presented as part of the Congress’s Creativity and Parkinson’s program. The American committee responsible for the Creativity and Parkinson’s program chose my husband Bob’s work Antarctic Waters (displayed) to advertise the exhibition.

The sight of his painting reproduced on a giant scale on the billboards at the entrance to the Creativity and Parkinson’s exhibition and on the front cover of the exhibition catalogue when I arrived to give my presentation was a defining moment on our journey with Parkinson’s.

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Notable achievements


Awarded an Order of Australia Medal for service to community health


Publication of 'Magic Happens - the story of Painting with Parkinsons'


Tingey Painting with Parkinsons ©Nancy Tingey 2018 methodology is trademarked as TINCAN

Awarded ACT Chief Minister's Inclusion Award for Long Service

Awarded life membership of Parkinson's ACT

The film 'Making a Mark: Art as therapy for Parkinson's' produced by Just Wright Publications, Melbourne Australia

Presented Art as a Therapy for Parkinson's at the first World Parkinson Congress, USA

Organised workshops at the Parkinson's Asia Pacific Conference in Melbourne

Curated Painting with Parkinsons and Art for Parkinson's Catalyst  exhibition in London

Publication of the book 'Arts Therapies and Progressive Illness - Nameless Dread' - chapter contribution

Ran Art for Parkinson's pilot trial for Parkinson's UK in England


Awarded Churchill Fellowship to investigate ways to use art as a therapy for people with Parkinson's Disease - USA, UK, Switzerland, Italy, Canada.  More about the Churchill Fellowship award.

Founded the Painting with Parkinsons group at the National Botanic Gardens in Canberra