Art, Science and Art Therapy
176 pages, 6 x 9
Release Date:01 Mar 2000

Art, Science and Art Therapy

Repainting the Picture

Jessica Kingsley Publishers
Since its inception, art therapy has relied largely on theory "borrowed" from psychotherapeutic approaches. In this provocative and original book on art therapy, Frances Kaplan outlines a scientific approach to art therapy. Kaplan examines the relationship between art and science, delineating the role of research and encouraging a spirit of enquiry in art therapy. She looks at the latest scientific developments, especially those in biology, evolution, and brain science, and relates them to theories about the creation and interpretation of art. This leads her to show how art therapists would benefit from learning more about neurology and the physical effects of art on the brain, and from being able to apply this knowledge in their art therapy practice. The scientific evidence presented offers support for an art-based theory of art therapy. By demonstrating the relationship between two disciplines which are traditionally thought of as opposing, Kaplan challenges our assumptions about art therapy and issues a call for further research and debate.
'This small concise, lucid book should be on the required reading list of programs in all the therapeutic arts. It points to the education needed to be effective in demonstrating what art therapists do, and why their contributions are valuable. ... I find this book an excellent resource, and recommend it highly.'- The Arts in Psychotherapy
Frances Kaplan, an eminent art therapist working in the US, gained her doctorate in Art Therapy at New York University. She has a background in both art and science and, before becoming an art therapist, worked in chemistry for several years. She has extensive experience in teaching, practising and lecturing on art therapy, including serving as Supervisor of Creative Arts Therapies at Carrier Foundation, a private psychiatric hospital in New Jersey, and as Coordinator of the Art Therapy Graduate Program at Hofstra University, New York. At present she teaches graduate art therapy courses at Marylhurst College, Oregon, and a course in art and conflict resolution at Portland State University, Oregon. She is Publications Chair for the American Art Therapy Association and a member of the editorial board of Art Therapy: Journal of the American Art Therapy Association.
Introduction. 1. Art and science. 2. The role of research. 3. Illuminating basic issues through recent findings. 4. Traditional psychotherapy theories: Their limitations and failures. 5. Benefits of artmaking: The scientific evidence. 6. Interpretation of art work: A reassessment. 7. Towards a scientific art-based theory. Afterword: A call for dialogue. Appendix. References. Index.
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