Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Art: The Unspeakable Language

A couple of years ago, we had the pleasure of hosting some Danish visitors who were touring the US, and one of them was a psychology major at the University of Copenhagen, but was also interested in art therapy.  So we got to talk about it a little while they were here.  Yesterday, she posted a wonderful quote that I had to share with all of you (with her permission):

"Amazed how art (in this case: one gut feeling question concerning art) can work its way to a person´s soul in a way that a 1000 therapeutic words can't.  University didn't teach me things like how to invent language for the unspeakable. Art did."  

- Elli Gørtz Kappelgaard

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Follow Me on Twitter!

I have now finally joined the Twitter-verse.  

You can follow me @Art_Tx

(Click on the icon below)

Saturday, January 19, 2013

How Music Helps to Heal the Injured Brain

I know this is a blog about art therapy, but as some of you know, I post occasionally about music therapy also.  Being a musician, I particularly appreciate this sister creative arts therapy.  An article published in "Cerebrum" from the DANA Foundation in 2010 explores how music helps neurologically with injured brains, calling the approach neurologic music therapy.  It is a lengthy article, so I will post the editor's note below, as well as links to the PDF and online articles.  Many thanks to my oboe teacher who shared this with me!

Editor’s note: The use of music in therapy for the brain has evolved rapidly as brain-imaging techniques have revealed the brain’s plasticity—its ability to change—and have identified networks that music activates. Armed with this growing knowledge, doctors and researchers are employing music to retrain the injured brain. Studies by the authors and other researchers have revealed that because music and motor control share circuits, music can improve movement in patients who have suffered a stroke or who have Parkinson’s disease. Research has shown that neurologic music therapy can also help patients with language or cognitive difficulties, and the authors suggest that these techniques should become part of rehabilitative care. Future findings may well indicate that music should be included on the list of therapies for a host of other disorders as well.

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Thursday, January 17, 2013

Just do it!

Wednesday, January 09, 2013

Notre Dame de Namur University to Offer Nation's First Ph.D. in Art Therapy

There aren't too many doctorate programs that incorporate art therapy, and the ones that have been in existence are PhD's in Education with a specialty in Art Therapy (like at Florida State University) or in Expressive Therapies or Creative Arts Therapies (to include art therapy, such as at Drexel University or Lesley University).  This is the first to be a PhD degree specifically in Art Therapy, now offered at Notre Dame de Namur University.  The field is progressing!

BELMONT, Calif., Jan. 9, 2013 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- A small Catholic university in California has become the first in the nation to offer a Ph.D. in art therapy. Beginning in fall 2013, Notre Dame de Namur University will admit its first class for the three-year program leading to a Doctor of Philosophy in Art Therapy. With 133 students, NDNU's master's program in art therapy is the largest in the United States and is recognized internationally as one of the leading art therapy programs in the world. This will be NDNU's first doctoral program.

"Art therapy, as a discipline, has been practiced since the 1940s and has grown rapidly in recent years," said Dr. Richard Carolan , chair of the NDNU Department of Art Therapy, "The need for a rigorous program designed to produce art therapists with a high level of skill in both research and clinical work has been clear for several years. As a recognized leader in the field of art therapy it was logical for NDNU to offer the first Ph.D. in this discipline." He added that in recent years, positions for art therapists have been growing rapidly in hospitals, K-12 school programs, community agencies, military family and veteran's health services and services for the elderly.

According to the Art Therapy Association (ATA), art therapy is a mental health profession that uses the creative process of art making to improve and enhance the physical, mental and emotional well-being of individuals of all ages. Research in the field confirms that the creative process involved in artistic self-expression helps people to resolve conflicts and problems, develop interpersonal skills, manage behavior, reduce stress, increase self-esteem and self-awareness, and achieve insight.

The three-year NDNU Ph.D. program is designed for working art therapy professionals with master's degrees in art therapy or a related field and emphasizes scholarly research as well as clinical expertise. NDNU, long a pioneer in the field of art therapy, has offered a master of arts in art therapy for more than 30 years and was one of the first schools in the west to offer the degree. Mount Mary College in Milwaukee is the only other institution offering a post-master's degree in art therapy, a doctorate in art therapy (DAT). According to the Art Therapy Association, two other schools offer art therapy as a concentration within other disciplines and two others offer doctorates in creative/expressive art therapies.

About NDNU

Notre Dame de Namur University is an independent Catholic, coeducational institution serving more than 2000 students. Founded by the Sisters of Notre Dame of Namur, Belgium in 1851 and chartered by the state in 1868, NDNU offers 21 liberal arts and career preparation undergraduate programs, and 13 graduate degrees and four credentials. The 50-acre campus is located in Belmont, just south of San Francisco. For more information visit

SOURCE Notre Dame de Namur University

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