Monthly Archives: January 2007

Cross-cultural influences in Visual Culture

On this site you can find many research articles that cater to cross-cultural influences in aesthetic and artistic development

Click here to check out the Exhibition of Shojo Manga!


It’s time to discuss and share our ideas of what visual culture is, how it influences children, and finally the possibility of implementing visual culture in art educational curricula.”

Art therapy for disease: Eurhythmy

DNA – Evolutions – Art therapy for disease: Eurhythmy – Daily News & Analysis

Art therapy for disease: Eurhythmy

Friday, January 19, 2007 15:42 I

HYDERABAD: Music, dance, sculpture, painting, speech and movement can supplement medical treatment in different diseases.

This system, called eurhythmy, is being discussed at an International Post-Graduate Meeting and training session going on at the ICRISAT from January 14 to January 21.

Giving details, expert Dr Michael Clocker told media the new system, called Anthroposophical Medicine in medical parlance, seeks to find a common language in addressing issues of health and illness from different medical perspectives.

Dr Clocker said the training programme was being organised by the Indian Branch of the Anthroposophical Society, begun with the aim of promoting the system based on the teachings of Austrian Scientist Rudolf Steiner.

The system also aimed at integrating Indian Medical Branches like Homeopathy, Ayurveda and Yoga.

Anthrosophical Medicines had made significant changes in cancer therapy, children with special needs and education.

Dr Clocker said trainers from all over the world including doctors, physochologists, therapists; teachers and special educators had come together to share experiences and to train hundreds of Indian doctors.

Dr Peter Glosby of Mount Baker Waldorf Shool, said the system aimed at treating the body as well as the mind, soul and spirit. Drugs were prepared from substances taken from minerals, plants and the animal kingdom.

Dr Srinivasa Rao, well-known homeopath said the system was slowly gaining popularity.

Art therapy helps kids deal with cancer fears

Art therapy helps kids deal with cancer fears : Local News : Anderson Independent Mail

Art therapy helps kids deal with cancer fears

Ten-year-old Mitch Mitchell spent time Saturday with other children who were dealing with the same types of issues — family members who battled or are battling cancer.

Mitch’s mother, Mikal Fletcher Mitchell, is a cancer survivor. She was diagnosed with breast cancer in August 2004 and finished her treatment in March 2005.

“I can see some of my friends that come here,” he said about the group that meets at the Cancer Association of Anderson office.

“I can express my feelings instead of just holding them in.”

Mitch said he likes talking to other children his age about what he went through. He said it’s better for him to talk about it than keep it balled up inside.

The group, Kaleidoscope Kidscape, which stands for Kids Sharing Creativity and Positive Experiences, is a free healing arts workshop series for children 5 to 12 and meets once a month. It’s led by Heather Kline Schaffer, who is a licensed professional counselor and a South Carolina artist.

Children who attended the workshops that have been offered for about three years can attend for as long as or as short a time as they want. All participants must pre-register as they are prescreened for the group to determine how they are currently coping.

Ms. Schaffer said the group discusses what it means to be diagnosed with cancer, what everyone is going through and ways to deal with their feelings.

“For these children it’s a time to process feelings, an opportunity to bond with others going through similar experiences and learn healthy coping skills,” she said.

The group also does an art project.

“We do an activity because it personalizes the experience and clinical studies have demonstrated healing arts projects reestablish a balancing of the emotions,” Ms. Schaffer said.

One of the first things the attendees did Saturday was make a list of their favorite things — things they can do to help themselves feel better. Dena Rhinehart, 13, of Anderson listed playing soccer, listening to music, hanging out with friends and going to church.

Dena, whose mother has breast cancer, said she enjoyed her first time attending a Kaleidoscope Kidscape workshop.

“It takes your mind off of things,” she said. “You can get it out.”

After making a list, participants turned colorful yarn into spheres they could use to comfort themselves by simply holding them or tossing them to another participant across the room.

By the end participants created several spheres, some of which they took home and some they shared with each other.

During other sessions, children have made collage and clay masks, scrapbooks, journals and kaleidoscopes.

Ms. Mitchell said she could tell her son benefited from attending the workshops.

“It’s sort of an outlet to be in a group where you don’t feel like you’re the only one going through it,” she said. “It gave him something to look forward to.”


Healing through the creation of art

SlipDontFall.jpg (Image JPEG, 799×619 pixels)
The Times Plus, Monroe Times, Monroe, Wisconsin, USA

Healing through the creation of art

Published Monday, January 22, 2007 10:17:33 AM Central Time

By Ellen Williams-Masson

MONROE — Jennifer Edge believes in the power of art. Jennifer Edge of the Primitive Soul Art Studio guides a home-school class of art students as they select images for an “I have a dream” collage in honor of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day. Pictured, from left, are John Keizer, Vincent Carus, Calli Vestin and Spencer Vestin.
Times photo: Ellen Williams-Masson

Creating art can help reshape life experiences that may be too painful for words, providing an outlet for emotions that may be therapeutic in the hands of an experienced art therapist.

“Sometimes clients aren’t able to talk about what has happened to them, or maybe they have retold and retold their stories, but when you bring in the art something different happens, something can change,” Edge said.

Edge is an art therapist at the Primitive Soul Art Studio in Monroe.

“When we put those experiences into art, we can process them and get them out. We can put our anger into the art; we can break things and then make something new out of it. It’s almost like a mirror they can look into Š and sometimes there’s a moment of ‘aha.'”

Edge has a master’s degree in art therapy and is an outpatient and in-home art therapist for Oregon Mental Health Services. Edge also works as a teen specialist for the Parental Stress Center in Madison, which offers peer support to parents and families under stress.

Through serving as the Parent Stressline coordinator, Edge helps maintain a free and confidential resource for parents experiencing stress.

The third hat Edge wears is as owner of the Primitive Soul Art Studio, where she offers traditional art classes as well as individual and group art therapy. She said that it was important for her to make the studio a welcoming place for everyone, and having a mixture of traditional art classes with professional art therapy sessions helps protect client privacy.

“I wanted to make it a place where there’s no stigma about walking through the door,”

Edge said. “No one knows why anyone is coming in here. In a small community it’s really important that we have confidentiality.”

Edge will be presenting a talk, “In search of the primitive soul,” at the Monroe Arts Center at 7 p.m. on Thursday, Jan. 25. After using case studies to illustrate how art therapy can be used to complement other therapy methods, Edge will help attendees find their “primitive soul” through a 30-minute art making session.

“I define a primitive soul as a being that expresses whatever they feel, however they feel, through art, without holding back, without inhibitions,” Edge said. “A primitive soul creates because of their instinctual call to create.”

Edge said that people are born into the world with a primitive desire to create, but that innate passion can be lost as people become more inhibited about expressing themselves through art.

“As an art therapist, I believe it is my calling to help individuals uncover their primitive soul, finding the artist within and helping the individual bring their creative soul out into the world,” she said.

Edge lives in Oregon but decided to open the art studio in Monroe because she identified a need in the area. Through open studio times for families and a large home-school program during the day, she is reaching out to an increasing number of people in the community.

Her studio pioneered the Shakespeare Project, a drama workshop for youth that compares our modern culture with characters and topics in the works of William Shakespeare to combat themes of abuse and violence.

This year’s program will be held from 4 to 8 p.m. on Thursdays from March 8 until May 31, culminating in a performance by the kids at the Monroe Arts Center in May.

Participants will have the opportunity to work with actors from the American Players Theater on Friday, April 6 as well as attend a performance at the theater in Spring Green in June.

The Shakespeare Project has been supported by the Wisconsin Arts Board since its inception in 2005 and is open to children ages 10 to 18 years old. Applications are due by March 1 and more information is available at the Primitive Soul Art Studio, 325-5268, or at


When Art Imitates Pain, It Can Help Heal,

When Art Imitates Pain, It Can Help Heal, a Therapy Group Finds – New York Times

When Art Imitates Pain, It Can Help Heal, a Therapy Group Finds
By ABEER ALLAM Published: July 14, 2005

The psychologist handed a painting by Frida Kahlo to a woman in a group therapy session for depression recently at a Brooklyn hospital.

“I want you to tell me what you see here,” the psychologist, María Sesín, said in Spanish. “What are you thinking about when you see this? How do you interpret it and relate it to your own lives?”

The woman, Cricelva Villicres, 52, started to cry. “This is a united
family,” she said. “I cannot identify with them. There was so much
violence and blood between my mother and father.”
  The painting, “My Parents, My Grandparents and I,” shows Kahlo as a naked child holding a blood-red ribbon connecting her to portraits of her parents and grandparents. The 11 women gathered around a long table at Lutheran Medical Center in Sunset Park took turns looking at it. When it was her turn, Vilma, who is 59, said: “It makes me feel very lonely. I have two children, but I am always alone. I do not have a family like this one.”

Vilma, who lives in Prospect Park, spoke on the condition that her last name not be used, to protect her privacy. The painting is one of 12 works by Kahlo that Dr. Sesín uses to treat Hispanic women who are suffering from depression, have been abused and have physical illnesses. The sessions are in Spanish, and the paintings help the women feel more comfortable discussing their traumatic experiences.

Continued here…
Note: you must register with the NewYork times first

Fading into the background


Originally uploaded by (bobi & bobi).
Bobi & bobi is a French artist who captures feelings and impressions most wonderfully. This one titled Retardataire, to me is a wonderful representation of how it feels when we sense we are blending into our surroundings.

What do you think? Take a look at more of her art on Flickr.

Art therapy can reduce pain and anxiety in cancer patients (press release)

Art therapy can reduce pain and anxiety in cancer patients
(press release)

Friday, August 25, 2006 by: NewsTarget

Key concepts: cancer, cancer patients and anxiety.

A study published today in the Journal of Pain and Symptom Management found that art therapy can reduce a broad spectrum of symptoms related to pain and anxiety in cancer patients. In the study done at Northwestern Memorial Hospital, cancer patients reported significant reductions in eight of nine symptoms measured by the Edmonton Symptom Assessment Scale (ESAS) after spending an hour working on art projects of their choice.

Fifty patients from the inpatient oncology unit at Northwestern Memorial were enrolled in the study over a four-month period. The ESAS is a numeric scale allowing patients to assess their symptoms of pain, tiredness, nausea, depression, anxiety, drowsiness, lack of appetite, well-being and shortness of breath. Eight of these nine symptoms improved; nausea was the only symptom that did not change as a result of the art therapy session. “Cancer patients are increasingly turning to alternative and complementary therapies to reduce symptoms, improve quality of life and boost their ability to cope with stress,” says Judith Paice, PhD, RN, director, Cancer Pain Program, Northwestern Memorial Hospital, and an author on the study. “We wanted to see if the creative process involved in making art is healing and life-enhancing.

Our study provides beginning evidence for the important role art therapy can play in reducing symptoms. Art therapy provides a distraction that allows patients to focus on something positive instead of their health for a time, and it also gives patients something they can control.” Each art therapy session was individualized and patients were offered a choice of subject matter and media. When participants could not use their hands or were not comfortable using the art materials, the art therapist would do the art making under the direction of the subject or they could look at and discuss photographic images that were assembled into a book.

Sessions ranged from light entertaining distraction to investigating deep psychological issues, says Nancy Nainis, MA, ATR, an art therapist at Northwestern Memorial Hospital, who is the lead author on the study. “We were especially surprised to find the reduction in ‘tiredness’,” says Ms. Nainis. “Several subjects made anecdotal comments that the art therapy had energized them. This is the first study to document a reduction in tiredness as a result of art therapy.” “Art provides a vehicle for expression,” says Dr. Paice. “It may be preferential to some cancer patients who may be uncomfortable with conventional psychotherapy or those who find verbal expression difficult.”


Cancer patients find comfort in artistic expression

Art therapy

Cancer patients find comfort in artistic expression

Jodie Sinnema,

Published: Tuesday, January 09, 2007

When Lee and her son sat down with their chisels to carve their soapstone polar bears, the pressure was off to talk about Lee’s terminal bone-marrow cancer, which she has fought for 10 years.

Lee didn’t have to be the concerned mom, pestering her 12-year-old son about his emotions and staring him down. Instead, art became a pathway for those emotions and thoughts to come out.

“That two-day camp taught me that I don’t need to corner and drill him about his feelings, but rather focus on something else that we both enjoy and let the conversation take care of itself,” Lee wrote to the director of the Arts In Medicine program at the Cross Cancer Institute.

Marilyn Hundleby with artworks created by patients at the Cross Cancer Institute.View Larger Image View Larger Image

Marilyn Hundleby with artworks created by patients at the Cross Cancer Institute.

John Lucas/Edmonton Journal

“Sometimes we just carve in silence, but I am even grateful for those moments because we are spending time together sharing a common interest. … The biggest gift is that I have found a non-invasive pathway to my son’s heart and I am creating my greatest masterpiece yet.”

Lee, now 44, was diagnosed with cancer when she was only 33 and was told she had two years to live since there is no known cure. Her son, only two at the time, has since grown up thinking chemotherapy, radiation, bone fractures and bone marrow transplants are just part of the norm.

Last year, Lee decided to sign the two of them up for a specialized Arts in Medicine program offered at the Cross Cancer Institute, since communication has become difficult with her “tweenager.”

The program, which has been formally offered for 10 years, is the only one of its kind and size in Canada to offer a dozen art choices including painting, photography, poetry, choir, soapstone carving and fibre and bead arts to help cancer patients work through their anger and confusion, said psychologist and program director Marilyn Hundleby.

As opposed to art therapy, where psychologists and therapists help patients read their deep emotions by examining the arts-in-medicine program’s use the artistic process itself to help patients see the world with new eyes.

Professional artists lead the group, then a psychologist, social worker or art therapist have patients write journal entries about what the art means in their life journey.

“This isn’t about craft, it’s about the process, about creating art and understanding one’s experience,” said Hundleby, whose program receives $140,000 from the Alberta Cancer Foundation each year. “It allows us to problem solve, to tap into wisdom, to come to an understanding where we can move through a difficult illness with a greater sense of control and our own power to make things happen that are beneficial to us.”

Oftentimes, patients think they can’t possibly paint or carve a sculpture. Then they see the beautiful end result.
“If I can do this, then the potential and possibilities become apparent,” Hundleby said. “If I can transform stone into something beautiful, what else can I