Therapeutic practice: a personal account of an arts based activity

José van den Akker


From a socio-historical and dynamic systems perspective, family and world environments have meaning to an individual. In art based research with the therapist in mind, the transpersonal practitioner seeks to recognise the complementary nature of cognition and social context, but also the potential of being informed by a larger realm associated with the unmanifest, formless, wordless, the coming into form, into words, hovering between and surrounding seeming separate worlds. This article explores both the process and the outcomes of engaging in an art therapy activity involving the examination of childhood/early adolescence experience and defense mechanisms developed at the time that intensified later in life. The findings may also inspire other art therapy practitioners.

Keywords: therapeutic practice; self-study; arts based activity; interactive field; dialogue

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