Date of Award
Master of Arts (MA)
Counseling and Human Services
Therapists knowledge of their personal beliefs is extremely beneficial to individual’s working in the field of art therapy. Therapists are better able to serve their clients when they have a clear understanding of themselves and their biases. The writer of this thesis identifies strongly as an art therapist and as a Christian. To better understand how the two strongest parts of her identity integrated, this thesis explored the parallels between Christianity and art therapy by reviewing the literature and facilitating an arts-based qualitative study. The literature suggested that art therapy can be effective with various populations within the Christian category. One Christian participant engaged in collaborative art making with the author/facilitator surrounding topics connected to the Christian faith. The facilitator, a white American 25-year-old female and the participant, a Hispanic American 24-year-old female. The topics explored included; collaboration and the creative process, trusting the process, parallels between the role of an art therapist and the role of a Christian, and co-facilitating with God. The creation of visual art was an essential element throughout this explorative process and is discussed in the methods; some of the writer’s artwork is intermixed throughout this presentation along with personal reflections. In result, numerous parallels between the principles of art therapy and the principles of Christianity were discovered. This research may help art therapists further understand how the two strongest components of their identity integrate and feel more confident approaching the work they do with clients.
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Hansen, Kendal, "The Parallels Between Art Therapy and Christianity: Integrating Identities as a Christian and an Art Therapist" (2018). Expressive Therapies Capstone Theses. 6.
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