Quotes from Essays on the Creative Arts Therapies: Imaging the Birth of a Profession by David Read Johnson
“I am one person, yet I am all of these, a drama therapist, a creative arts therapist, a mental health professional, a health care provider, and a suffering person. Each of us faces this challenge, to be one, and to be many. The capacity to integrate experience: our feelings, thoughts, roles, and identities into one whole, while maintaining an appreciation for the diversity and complexity of the parts, this indeed is the challenge of development, of growth, of maturity.” (p. 36)
There are always challenges of balancing institutional stress and chaos while still needing to be accepted, recognized, and respected within the institutional framework. Dolginko and Robbins (1987) suggest the following as possible ways to avoid professional burnout:
1. We need to put limits on our work so that we have time with friends and family.
2. We need to process our reactions concerning both patients and the institutions within which we work. Ideally, that should be done both verbally and nonverbally in peer groups and informally with other mental health colleagues.
3. We need periods of time to get completely away from our work to replenish our personal resources.
4. We must examine our own issues regarding separation and be able to leave a situation that becomes so toxic that it makes our effectiveness and potential growth impossible. (p. 177-118)
Dolginko, B. G., Robbins, A. (1987). The institution as a holding environment for the therapist. In The artists as therapist (pp. 116-136). New York, NY: Human Sciences Press, Inc. Schaverien, J. (1985). Creativity and the Institution. International Journal of Art Therapy: Inscape, 3-6.
Art Therapy Without Borders has officially launched and its mission is:
• to promote the therapeutic use of art and advancement of art therapy research in mental health,
healthcare, educational, community, and independent practice settings;
• to establish an international network of colleagues, students and other interested individuals
• to support the development of education, communication, and exchange of information on art
• to promote understanding of art therapy through dissemination of leading edge news and development of media, online education, archives, and publications;
• to encourage public recognition of art therapy through development of opportunities to serve to others
in need, enhance health, and transform lives;
• to advance collaborative research and program development
“I’ve been thinking about what I’d like to talk about: Moby Dick, the slaves of Michelangelo, Hans Hoffman, My Bloody Valentine, but now that I’m here, my greatest urge is speak to you of dental care,” she began. “My generation had a rough go, dentally….You have a better chance at dental health, and I say this because you want at night to be pacing the floor because your muse is burning inside of you, because you want to do your work, because you want to finish that canvas, because you want to make that design, because you want to help your fellow man. You don’t want to be pacing because you need a damn root canal.”
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Doctor, Doctor (Patti Smith, Steven Soderbergh, Jonathan Lethem)
Last Monday, Pratt Institute held its graduation ceremony at Radio City Music Hall. At 10 A.M., giddy graduates and their families milled around the auditorium, while, backstage, a breakfast buffet had been laid out for professors, administrators, and a handful of people with distinguished careers in the arts who were about to receive honorary degrees (official wording: “the degree of Doctor of Fine Arts honoris causa . . . with all the rights and privileges pertaining thereto”). A few of the honorees looked especially pleased: they’d never received college degrees in the first place.
Brooklyn’s Pratt Institute invited the great Patti Smith to their graduation, awarding her with an honorary doctorate and a place on the podium for what turned out to be a gorgeously heartfelt talk.