If you found your way here, you are probably as passionate about expressive arts therapy as I am. The arts have the potential to transform lives and often in profound ways; research is demonstrating that art improves not only our quality of life, but also is effective in reducing pain, fatigue and stress and increasing cognitive abilities and emotional well-being. This website is dedicated to the idea of "expressive arts therapy without borders" -- the use of the arts for health and wellness, psychotherapy, community development, service to others, and social transformation. When words are not enough, we turn to the arts to repair and to tell our stories. And in doing so, we find pathways to wellness, recovery and transformation.To that end I am an advocate and explorer of how these approaches change lives throughout the world, each and every day.
Cathy A. Malchiodi, PhD
About Expressive Arts Therapy. Expressive arts therapy is the purposeful use of two or more art forms within psychotherapy and healing practices. It may combine established psychotherapeutic theories and techniques with psychological, interpersonal and somatic aspects of the creative process and self-expression. In mental health, it is used in applied in clinical settings with diverse populations including children, adults, families and groups; it also has found its way into communities as a form of healing engagement and social action. As a part of integrative health care, expressive arts therapy (art, music, drama, movement, and writing) complement and support traditional and complementary health practices and interventions.
For an article on expressive arts therapy as a multi-layered approach, see this Psychology Today link.
For more information about Trauma-Informed Art Therapy and Trauma-Informed Expressive Arts Therapy, please visit the Trauma-Informed Practices and Expressive Arts Therapy Institute website. The Trauma-Informed Practices and Expressive Arts Therapy Institute is dedicated to providing professional education that promotes greater understanding of creative, trauma-informed practices. The Institute offers continuing education live courses/workshops and distance learning courses for mental health professionals and master's and doctoral students. Courses emphasize approaches that are based on best practices, integrative methods and current research in expressive arts, creative arts, and trauma-informed care and complement mind-body, somatic, sensory integration and neurobiology-informed methods of trauma intervention. We believe that the expressive arts approach [the integrated use of multiple arts forms] in particular is essential to many individuals' trauma recovery and are an important part of integrative health care. The Institute supports a vision for advanced understanding and education in creative methods of therapy and promotes the value of these approaches as complementary to mind-body, sensory-integration and neuropsychology approaches to trauma-informed care, psychotherapy and wellness.
Psychotherapy Networker, March/April 2018, Ryan Howes, PhD: "To bring myself up to date, I reached out to Cathy Malchiodi, a Kentucky-based art therapist and author of more than 20 books on the topic, including The Art Therapy Sourcebook and the recently released, What to Do When Children Clam Up in Psychotherapy. As president of Art Therapy Without Borders and founder of The Trauma Informed Practices and Expressive Arts Therapy Institute, Malchiodi has her finger on the pulse of the profession and is at the forefront of a growing movement to treat returning combat veterans with art and expressive art therapy." See this link for the rest of the interview.
Slate.com, Rebecca Bloom: Dr. Malchiodi's interview with Slate on "The Devil Is in the Doodles." Pop culture is full of kids who reveal their inner demons by drawing creepy pictures. Does that happen in real life? To read more, see this link.
Kindling the Spark: The Healing Powers of the Expressive Arts in Psychotherapy Networker, March/April 2019. This article will give you an overview of how the expressive arts are integrated within the context of psychotherapy.
Visit theses page to find out more about art therapy, creative arts therapies and expressive arts therapy books, including the best-selling Art Therapy Sourcebook, Handbook of Art Therapy (2nd ed.), and Understanding Children's Drawings and the Art Therapy and Health Care from Guilford Press. Find articles and links to a variety of resources and articles here.
Use the Contact Page more information about scheduling intensive courses, keynotes, workshops and distance learning opportunities in art therapy and expressive arts therapy, including Trauma-Informed Art Therapy®/Trauma-Informed Expressive Arts Therapy® and integrative approaches to arts therapies for health and well-being. For attorneys and courts, send a formal request for consultation or forensic expert opinion on children's and adults' drawings and art expressions, trauma-related issues and custody and criminal cases.
Visit the Social Media Page for links to a variety of resources on current news on art therapy, expressive arts therapy, creative arts therapies, play therapy, trauma-informed practice and integrative healthcare. And for even more information on a monthly basis, visit "Arts and Health" on Psychology Today-- contemporary, leading-edge articles on creative arts in psychotherapy and integrative medicine.