Tag Archives: Art Therapy

Ursuline College presents the Healing Imagination VI: Art Therapy Juried Art Exhibition June 13 – August 1

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Ursuline’s Master of Arts in Art Therapy and Counseling department proudly presents the sixth juried art show displaying the work of art therapists from the greater Cleveland area. The Opening Reception will be on Friday, June 13, 5 PM to 9 PM in the Florence O’Donnell Wasmer Gallery on the Ursuline College campus, 2550 Lander Road, Pepper Pike, Ohio. The Wasmer Gallery is located adjacent to the Fritzsche Building at the western edge of the campus. The front and patio entrances are wheelchair-accessible, with free parking available in the adjacent lot.

The theme of the show underlines the therapeutic use of art and the power of images to heal. The work encompasses a wide range of media including drawings, paintings, prints, mixed media and ceramics. The show features the work of art therapists, faculty members, alumnae and students of the College’s Art Therapy and Counseling program.

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Support Art Therapy and Counseling Zimbabwe service trip at the Cleveland Flea

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Three Art Therapy and Counseling Program, Ursuline College students are travelling to Zimbabwe in December to support children who have been orphaned by AIDS, suicide and/or violence. Stop by The Cleveland Flea this Saturday to support our students!

The Cleveland Flea is “a place to find lovely handmade goods and to happen upon an item that sparks memories of times past.” You can find items crafted from cherished possessions re-purposed, locally made jewelry, art, crafts, clothing, food and learn from artisans in The Maker Center, aimed at connecting our local talent with the community in a new way, on a new level.

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Art Therapy and Counseling in Ecuador: creative expression with los ninos

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We arrived at elementary school ISPED Manuela Canizares in Quito in the morning (March 10). Students were enthusiastically singing their national anthem and reciting the Ecuadorean pledge of allegiance our group. After the warm welcome, we split into groups of 20 four-year-old children in each group. Our individual groups greeted each of us with an abundance of energy, excitement and hugs.  They were eager to use the art materials and we were excited to share our creative knowledge. Along with creating beautiful artwork , we interacted with the children through song, play and a variety of other activities.

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Alumna returns to lead new undergraduate Art Therapy program

Jennifer Schwartz Wright

Jennifer Schwartz Wright ’93, ATR-BC began her college career at a large university but found herself lost in large classes. After three semesters, she was ready for a change; some soul searching and investigating lead Schwartz Wright to the world of art therapy. She enrolled at Ursuline College because of the art therapy graduate program, hoping to learn more about the career.

While there was no official art therapy major at the time, Gail Rule-Hoffman, Chair of the Art Therapy and Counseling graduate program, worked with Schwartz Wright to set up undergraduate fieldwork so she could become a participant observer in a local art therapy psycho education program for children at risk for substance abuse and delinquency. According to Schwartz Wright, “My time at Ursuline was some of the most nourishing, growth inducing time of my life.”

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Advocacy and Empowerment through Art

Art Therapy and Counseling Students Send Sock Monkey Delegation to South Africa

A section of the Art Therapy and Counseling elective course Advocacy & Empowerment through Art: Social Action and Trauma Informed Care recently introduced students to the role of craftivism and its possibilities to empower vulnerable populations, as well as promote important social causes and issues through making things by hand.

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Betsy Greer, Crafitvist Pioneer states,  “Craftivism is the practice of engaged creativity, especially regarding political or social causes. By using their creative energy to help make the world a better place, craftivists help bring about positive change via personalized activism. Craftivism allows practitioners to customize their particular skills to address particular causes.”  (“Craftivism.” Encyclopedia of Activism and Social Justice, 2007). Craftivism can take on many handmade forms, including radical needlepointing, crosstiching, knitting, fiber arts, yarnbombing, and more.
A craftivism initiative explored further in this course included the volunteer-run organization Operation Sock Monkey (OSM).  OSM collaborates with humanitarian organizations that provide laughter, hope, and healing to communities around the world affected by disease, disaster and social/political turmoil through providing handmade sock monkeys to

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communities in need of a smile.  Students in Advocacy & Empowerment through Art became operatives and craftivists for an OSM mission by learning how to sew handmade sock monkeys and then donated these “delegates” to OSM as one of their course requirements.
OSM Headquarters in Vancouver Canada assigned our group of delegates to travel to Cape Town, South Africa as part of the Sinovuyo Caring Families Project with Clowns Without Borders South Africa (CWBSW).  “Sinovuyo is focused on the highest‐risk families with children ages 3 to 8 years:caregivers affected by HIV/AIDS or domestic violence. The program aims to help parents and caregivers develop nurturing relationships with their children, prevent and reduce abusive parenting, while coping with stress from HIV/AIDS, poverty, and violence” (OSM website).  Sock monkeys areused in storytelling and activities that promote parent/child communication and bonding.

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This group of eager sock monkeys look forward to helping families served by the Sinovuyo Project.  A job well done by all the art therapy and counseling students with their first successful Operative Mission!  I hope this experience inspires lots more sock monkey making & craftivism in the future!
Save the date! Ursuline’s Art Therapy and Counseling Program Holiday Happening for students and alumni December 14 will include the opportunity to make another group of sock monkey delegates to be donated towards a future OSM mission effort.
Sources:
Encyclopedia of Activism and Social Justice: http://www.sagepub.com/refbooks/Book228028
Operation Sock Monkey: http://www.operationsockmonkey.com
Sinovuyo Caring Familes Project- Clowns Without Borders: http://cwbsa.org/sinovuyo
How to Make a Sock Monkey [VIDEO]: http://vimeo.com/28869273
The blog post was written by Gretchen Miller, MA, ATR-BC, CTC-S,  Adjunct Professor for Art Therapy and Counseling at Ursuline College.
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The “Ohio Collective” Presents in Oxford, England!

After London, the time for the conference and presentation at Mansfield College (University of Oxford, Oxford, U.K.) finally arrived. The paper presentations would be based off joint research project which was developed between Ursuline College and Tiffin University. The research examined the relationships between creativity and mental health/mental illness. Members of the project team who presented in Oxford included UC professor, DoHee Kim-Appel, Ph.D., UC Art Therapy and Counseling graduate students, Claire Whiteman, Mary Cassidy, & Rebecca Stanic, Tiffin University professor Jonathan Appel, Ph.D., and undergraduate behavioral sciences student Erin Snapp.

Oxford proved to be a relaxed and calm setting in contrast to the helter skelter (Beatles pun intended!) of London.

Both my husband and I agreed that there can be no place more inspiring to an academic than Oxford. The pastoral settings among the ancient gothic architecture –left us truly breathless. Just strolling in the surroundings that once held Lewis Carroll, Aldous Huxley, Oscar Wilde, Percy Bysshe Shelley, J.R.R. Tolkien, C.S. Lewis, T. S. Eliot, John Wycliffe, John Wesley, Stephen Hawking, Edwin Hubble, as well as heads of state (26 British prime ministers have attended Oxford) gave us the momentary illusion of being more enlightened!

We even made sure we even visited the famous “Eagle and the Child” public house—which was a gathering place for “The Inklings,” which was an Oxford writers’ group that included C. S. Lewis, J. R. R. Tolkien, Charles Williams and Hugo Dyson. It is from here that the writers read and discussed various works, including their manuscripts.

University of Oxford!

Although its exact date of origin is not completely know, there is evidence of teaching as far back as 1096 making it the oldest university in the English-speaking world! The University of Oxford is actually over 30 or so semi-autonomous colleges, which made for quite a diversity of place. (http://www.ox.ac.uk/visitors_friends/visiting_the_university/index.html)

The conference itself was held on the beautiful campus of Mansfield College (The main building was designed by architect Basil Champneys, and built between 1887-1890. It houses the main college library, the law library and the theology library). One could not think a more perfect setting for an intentionally intimate conference (just 25 or so papers out of 100 submitted were accepted).

International and Inter-Disciplinary

The conference was sponsored by Inter-Disciplinary.Net, which is “a forum for the exchange and interaction of ideas, research and points of view that bear on a wide range of issues of concern and interest in the contemporary world”. The organization goals are to” promote and sponsor inter- and multi-disciplinary encounters by bringing people together from differing contexts, disciplines, professions, and vocations, with the aim to engender and nurture engagements that cross the boundaries of intellectual work.”  This group also hopes that its “projects, conferences and publishing activities are creative and novel, and they evolve constantly as we seek out and foster emergentdevelopments.” http://www.inter-disciplinary.net/  Dr. Rob Fisher is the Network Founder and Network Leader. His great vision is apparent through the well run experience.

Conference participants were educators and scholars from various countries including, Scotland, UK, Poland, Germany, Saudi Arabia, Turkey, New Zealand, South Africa, Montreal, Italy, and the United States. There were psychiatrists, clinical psychologists, a feminist art historian, a medicalanthropologist, a philosopher, an attorney, several literature professors, and several additional professionals.

There was a collective feeling among us that the conference organizers were achieving their goals, and we were very impressed with the design and intent of the conference. It was truly fantastic to have cross national and cross-disciplinary discussions. It was very gratifying to see all the students treated as peers by both the organizers and attendees. The ideas and discussion (both formal and informal) were some of the best professional experiences we ever had. Special appreciate goes to conference facilitator Gonzalo Araoz—for his wit and support. He stood as a shining role model for us and our students.

We (Dr. Dohee Kim-Appel and husband Dr. Jonathan Appel) on the first day presented a paper entitled: “Non-Rational States of Consciousness: Understanding and Counseling ‘Madness’.”

The research team (which came to be dubbed “The Ohio Collective” at the conference) jointly presented the paper, “Creativity, Critique, and Cutting Edge: Creativity and Madness.” Each member of the team took a research area of the topic and presented on it– and opened the topic for further discussion. All the students presented with skill and grace. As our students presented extremely well — Jonathan and I were elated. The experience confirmed the reason why we wanted to be educators. Feedback from the participants regarding our students was overwhelming. We all seem to recognize that learning comes in many forms. I was proud to be part of the “Ohio Collective” in Oxford!

The blog post was written by DoHee Kim-Appel, Ph.D. Associate Professor for Art Therapy and Counseling at Ursuline College. 

After the Lecture: In the View of the Korean Mountains

After experiencing the hustle and bustle of Korean cities—it was now time for country-side travels. My husband and I first decided to venture to the Southwest part of South Korea. We took a surprisingly comfortable five-hour bus ride through the mountain-cradled picturesque country-side towards Haenam County, Jeonnam Province. Beside the natural beauty of the destination—we had made arrangements for a week-end “temple stay” at Daeheungsa Temple – a Buddhist Temple nestled within a remote national park. Daeheungsa is located on Duryun Mountain, in the southernmost area of Korea, and is the head temple for the 22nd District of the Jogye Order of Korean Buddhism. The exact date that the temple was founded is unknown, but historians are certain that the temple has stood since the Three-Kingdom period of ancient Korea (4th-9th centuries CE). The Temple Stay program is an educational and a cultural experience program designed to enhance the understanding of Korean spirituality and Korean culture. A typical temple stay program entails overnight stays at a Buddhist temple, and experiential participation in such Buddhist rituals as yebul (ceremonial service), chamseon (meditation), and barugongyang (monastic meal). We were given very comfortable living quarters (with traditional floor beddings) as well as traditional clothing. We had very welcoming and helpful guides, including much individual attention from the Head Education Monk. He provided many formal and informal discussions of Korean Buddhists’ life, culture, and spirituality. Possible future collaboration of Korean to English text translations even discussed.

After the temple stay, we also made arrangements to stay nearby at what has been described as one of the “first” Korean “Inns”. This “Inn” was nothing like what we think of in America as an Inn. In Korea, these overnight places are called a “Yeogwan”.  Yeogwans are a traditional Korean housing structure, with heated floors and in this case a stunning natural view. Traditional Korean meals are also served for a low fee. We enjoyed a delicious dinner of fresh fish and vegetables with a scenic view of the mountains. Nothing could have been a more perfect way to end this country side-trip.

Later, after returning to Seoul, we also did a day tour to the DMZ in the Northern-most part of South Korea.  The DMZ area is near the border of North Korea and is a place of great contradictions. It is a very peaceful and an exquisite natural area of a renewed nature preserve. Since no large structures–urban or military are allowed there—it has abundant natural and wild life. Many animal and plant species– once nearly extinct —have returned in this quiet undisturbed setting. But in this beautiful stillness there are also signs of great tensions. There are many Army checkpoints, restrictions, and watchful armed observations by military soldiers. As we ventured our glances into the vast distance mountains of North Korea—one can’t help but feel the pain of past losses and pray for a future peace.

The blog post was written by DoHee Kim-Appel, Ph.D. Associate Professor for Art Therapy and Counseling at Ursuline College.

After the Lecture: The City Life in Korea

Given that my family lives in Seoul, South Korea—we had much time to explore the city. Seoul is the capital and largest metropolis of South Korea. A megacity with a population of more than 10 million, it is one of the largest cities in the developed world.  The Seoul Capital Area, which includes the surrounding Incheon metropolis and Gyeonggi province, is the world’s second largest metropolitan area with over 25.6 million people, and is home to over half of South Koreans along with 632,000 international residents [1].  Situated on the Han River, Seoul’s history stretches back more than 2,000 years when it was founded in 18 BC by Baekje, one of the Three Kingdoms of Korea. It continued as the capital of South Korea under the Joseon Dynasty and the Korean Empire. The Seoul metropolitan area contains four UNESCO World Heritage Sites: Changdeok Palace, Hwaseong Fortress, Jongmyo Shrine and the Royal Tombs of the Joseon Dynasty. Seoul is surrounded by mountains, the tallest being Mt. Bukhan, the world’s most visited national park [2].

We were able to venture many of my old haunts as well as some new corners of this extensive (and continually updated) immense city. One of the highlights was an evening boat tour along the Han River—which flows through the center of the city. The view offered from the river was a stunning and shimmering panorama of one of the world’s most vibrant cities. The experience was animated with the sights of colors, the sounds of laughter, and the smells of Korean barbecues. No city seems more alive than Seoul in the summer.

We also had a chance to spend a day in the Southern Port city of Busan.  Busan is South Korea’s second largest metropolis after Seoul, with a population of approximately 3.6 million [3]. The Metropolitan area (includes adjacent cities of Gimhae and Yangsan) has a population of over 4.5 million, and when including nearby Ulsan, and the South Gyeongsang region—the area has over 8 million population in the metropolitan area [4]. The area also has Korea’s largest beach and Korea’s longest river, the Nakdong River. Busan is the largest port city in South Korea and the world’s fifth busiest seaports.  Busan also offers one the world’s best seafood markets, and includes many Korean fish favorites of all types. We also got to experience the ocean shoreline vistas from atop an open air bus, and we sampled the Korean street sweet treats in the bustling shopping district. From Busan we able to rapidly travel back to Seoul via one of the world’s fastest “bullet trains.” City Life is Korea holds many charms.

  1. http://kosis.kr/abroad/abroad_01List.jsp?parentId=A
  2. http://english.visitkorea.or.kr/enu/SI/SI_EN_3_1_1_1.jsp?cid=264309
  3. http://english.busan.go.kr/01_about/03_02.jsp
  4. http://www.busan.go.kr/library/03statistics/01_01.jsp?pageNo=1&search_type=02&groupid=00080_/00001&year=2013&category_gubun=%ED%86%B5%EA%B3%84%EC%9E%90%EB%A3%8C%EC%8B%A4&command=view&strSN=116

The blog post was written by DoHee Kim-Appel, Ph.D. Associate Professor for Art Therapy and Counseling at Ursuline College.

After the Lecture: Traveling Across Korea

After the IAGG World Congress of Gerontology and Geriatrics Conference in Seoul ended– it was now time to spend some time traveling across Korea. With my family in tow, we were off to visit Jeju Island—which is off the South Coast of the Korean peninsula. Jeju Island, while little known to Westerners, is a celebrated vacation spot for Asians.

Jeju is often referred to as “little Hawaii”. Jeju Island is a tropical volcanic island, towered over by Halla-san (Halla Mountain) — a volcano and the highest mountain in South Korea. Jeju Island is now known as one of the 7 new natural wonders of the world. The island has both stunning mountain views as well as beautiful seascapes.

The only thing that rivals its physical beauty is the freshness and the abundance of specialty food dishes. The Jeju cuisine includes porridges made with fish, seafood, seaweeds, or mushrooms. Jeonbokjuk is an abalone porridge that many enjoy. Gamgyul is harvested on the island, which is a type of orange similar to the Mandarin orange or tangerine. Black pig is a delicacy on the island as well.

In between very scenic sightseeing—we made sure we were well fed! Our activities included hiking Seongsan Ilchulbong or “Sunrise Peak”. On the hike towards the top there are many picturesque points to capture the city, and water with vistas of wonderful shades of green and blue. The top of the cliff forms a natural green “bowl”.

We also spent much time in lush green island forests—complete with stunning waterfalls. The trip was well-rounded with a Tea Museum visit and an educational Tour of a Traditional Folk-Village recreation. While Jeju is an island I visited as a young scuba driver—it was fantastic to see with renewed eyes.

The blog post was written by DoHee Kim-Appel, Ph.D. Associate Professor for Art Therapy and Counseling at Ursuline College.

After the Lecture: Service Trip to El Salvador

Students, faculty and alumnae from the Art Therapy and Counseling Department at Ursuline College are currently on a service trip in El Salvador. Read their blog below.

Art Therapy and Counseling Trip to El SalvadorFinal Blog: El Salvador Service Trip 2013 We began this service learning trip with the idea to immerse ourselves in another culture to see and be seen. It was our premise to experience the world as interconnected, and become more global citizens in the world. We hoped that this experience would be eye opening and that we could bring some joy to the children of Santo Domingo School in Chiltiupan, El Salvador. This experience did prove to be eye opening and more! The faculty, alumni and students were blessed with an “over the moon” reception of gratitude, made evident by multiple hugs, kisses and excitement in all the art and creative activities. The people we came in contact with were warm, authentic, and earnest in learning from all of us, as we were eager to learn from them.

The Ursuline students, alumni and staff quickly picked up Spanish phrases that made communication more viable. At times it was a comedic play of crazy charades in hopes of being understood. Nevertheless, love is a universal language, and it was felt in the students outreach and the heartfelt response. We successfully worked with approximately 150 children, from ages 5-17, painting, drawing, and creating all manner of craft projects. In addition, 6 murals were painted on the school walls with the support of the teens at Santo Domingo School, and this left a lasting mark for the children to remember our time together.

Art Therapy and Counseling Trip to El Salvador

Adding to the art making and work at the school, we visited extreme rural areas around Chiltiupan to get a better world view of the grim reality of poverty and its effects on individuals. We even went to a very small school on another mountain top and made a surprise visit. We went about entertaining these shocked children with the “hokie pokie” and then proceeded to teach an art therapy lesson of feeling expression. These particular children indicated to us how grateful they were for our “drop in” visit letting us know that they were honored because they are often forgotten about because of their remote location.

Toward the end of our trip, we toured the capital and were able to see the mural and memorial wall honoring the 75,000 people killed in the civil war. Sister Dorothy Kazel and the 3 other church women were listed on this wall, along with countless others who lost their lives fighting for freedom.

At the end of the day, we have been given a bigger gift than we could ever have brought. The gift was one of gratitude. No matter how poor any of the native El Salvadoran people were, there was always enough joy for a smile and an invitation to sit and talk, or come into their home, no matter how humble. Surely our time was well spent in the service of humanity, and as we helped, we received tenfold.
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Saturday April 20 We just finished a beautiful breakfast while looking at the ocean. Heading to the airport soon. We all have mixed feelings of joy and sadness. Our hearts have been opened in new ways and we will forever be grateful for this experience.

Friday April 19 Our last day in El Salvador today. We are heading to the city of San Salvador to go to the art museum and the market; then some time at the beach!

Art Therapy and Counseling Trip to El SalvadorThursday April 18 Our last day at the school. Bittersweet. The children and the students have been enriched by this experience. A 5th grader in Cleveland had donated all her stuffed animals for our trip. We gave them out yesterday and it was axing to witness the excitement and joy!

Our students are a marvel and have taken the voice, vision and values ideals into practice. They have been so generous of heart and spirit, truly amazing.

Wednesday April 17 Monday was an exciting day. Children at Santo Domingo School were overjoyed with our presence and art materials. We worked hard at practicing Spanish phrases and giving out lots of hugs! Students really seemed to gain experience in multicultural awareness and communication. We are off again this morning for a 9 hour day! Adios!

Sunday April 14 Arrived Saturday. After the memorial, Sr. Rose pulled to the side of the road for some cool refreshing coconut juice. The woman at the stand whacked the coconuts with a machete. She put straws into the top of the coconut so we could drink the juice. Later she sliced them open and we ate the coconut meat! Delicious!
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At the start of every endeavor it is important to ask, “Why are we doing this, and why do we want to do this?” We as students and faculty at Ursuline College wish to come to El Salvador to help those in need. After searching for different locations to provide Art Therapy and Counseling for people of the world who need help, it appeared that El Salvador was one of the best choices due to Ursuline College and Ursuline Sisters connection to El Salvador in providing service work and help over the last 30+ years.

Because we are Art Therapists, we also know that art has no barriers and a common language is not needed for the expressive healing of art making and art psychotherapy to be of benefit. As faculty and members of the department of Graduate Art Therapy and Counseling, we also wanted to find a way for our students to become global helpers and healers, and to be able to see the world in a more realistic light. This reality will help to create a mature and seasoned therapist in the world, wherever the student ultimately chooses to practice counseling and art therapy. To see and be seen are core needs in every human beings life, we are at the very least hoping to provide a lens of understanding and deep compassion for those in El Salvador who we work with by really “seeing” the essence of human suffering, courage, and resilience.

Art Therapy and Counseling Trip to El Salvador

We wish to serve the children in El Salvador who feel disenfranchised and unempowered. Those who have experienced loss, grief, trauma, stress, depression, hopelessness and despair are our target group; however, all are welcome to experience art therapy and counseling groups, sessions, and projects as Sr. Rose and Sr. Irma see fit. Those who are attending from the U.S. include students Mari Ballentine, Stephanie Ferenc, Diane Fleisch-Hughes, Rachel Lyman, Steve Macek, Emma Pitchford, Nema Saleem, Brittany Spaulding, Sharon Stupp, Ashley Tilberg, Nicole Topp, UC alum Areka Foster, and faculty Megan Seaman, Katherine Jackson and Sister Kathleen Burke.