Valentina CastroArt Therapy

What is Art Therapy?

According to the AATA:

Art Therapy is an integrative mental health and human services profession that enriches the lives of individuals, families, and communities through active art-making, creative process, applied psychological theory, and human experience within a psychotherapeutic relationship.

According to the BAAT:

Art therapy is a form of psychotherapy that uses art media as its primary mode of expression and communication. Within this context, art is not used as a diagnostic tool but as a medium to address emotional issues, which may be confusing and distressing.

Art therapy is known as an intervention work that seeks to maximize the client’s strengths. In such a way as to restore the psychological balance of the patient and, at the same time, avoid dependence on the art therapist.

The main goal is for the patient to adapt to life factors that are stressful for him/her, and for this, there are the different artistic disciplines: music therapy, writing, dance, visual arts, dance-movement therapy, drama therapy, etc. Beyond its merely therapeutic purposes, art therapy is considered a technique for personal development, self-knowledge, and emotional expression.

Art Therapy Origins

Art therapy is a relatively young discipline. Its history begins in the 1940s, where both in Europe and the United States, studies and research began to be carried out on patients with mental illnesses and their artistic expression. In the 1960s, the first associations of specialists (art therapists) began to form to have similar criteria and promote their development. The associations that have stood out are:

American Art Therapy Association (AATA),
British Association of art therapist (BAAT), United Kingdom

The definitions of both associations (American and British) are centered on the psychotherapeutic field; Despite this, art therapy has extended its borders in intervention processes focused on developing different capacities:

  • Stimulates creativity
  • Invites introspection
  • Reduces the level of stress
  • It is an opportunity to exercise resilience
  • Reduces the level of stress

Art therapy can be aplied in:

  • Psychotherapeutic process
  • Schools
  • Residences for the elderly
  • Management of stress, anxiety, or eating disorders.
  • Hospitals
  • Mental health cases
  • Social and community intervention
(+52) 1 55 3118 7996