Posts Tagged ‘DVAM’

I CAN WE CAN Day of Action through Art: Domestic Violence Awareness Month 2013

October 4, 2013

During Domestic Violence Awareness Month, use the power of the arts and A Window Between World’s I Can We Can movement as a form of advocacy and empowerment to help end abuse & interpersonal trauma:

I CAN WE CAN Day of Action | A Window Between Worlds

“24 people every minute experience intimate partner violence in the United States. And this figure may be even higher because most people don’t report it. Break the silence surrounding this silent epidemic. Be part of our I CAN WE CAN Day of Action on October 16 during Domestic Violence Awareness Month.

The Day of Action is a time for all of us to show our solidarity by sparking dialogue and raising visibility either online or in the streets. Join with the I CAN WE CAN community and use art to move our communities towards change.” (AWBW website)


Related Posts:

Advocacy & Empowerment through Art: Social Action and Trauma Informed Care

Survivor’s Hand: Finding Safety through Art: #ICANWECAN

Getting the Picture [VIDEOS]: Domestic Violence Awareness Month 2012

Finding a Safe Place: Creating Safety for Domestic Violence Survivors through Art


Journey Shoes: Walking In the Cycle of Violence

October 16, 2012

Journey Shoes: Cycle of Violence

Over at 6 Degrees of Creativity 2, I have waited to begin Magdalena Karlick‘s Journey Shoes workshop until this month, as I knew I wanted to do something around the shoes and Domestic Violence Awareness, which the month of October recognizes.

Magdalena’s workshop encourages exploration of a journey or experience through altering one’s own shoes or used shoes as symbols and expressions of these journeys. Read more about the concept behind Magdalena’s project with graduate art therapy students at Southwestern College here.

The pair of shoes I used for this project are not my own, but an abandoned, unwearable pair from the domestic violence shelter I work in offering art therapy to women and children. The shoes tell a story about the cycle of violence victims of abuse endure and its impact.

The top of the shoes are labeled and then stitched with components of the cycle of violence: acting out, tension building, minimizing, and then a period of calm.  The inside soles of the shoes include black and white portraits representing victims and feelings of (but not limited to) hurt, shame, fear, and guilt.  The shoes are displayed on a canvas board I’ve distressed with ink, beeswax, and collaged with dictionary definitions related to finding safety and hope.

Awareness and education about domestic violence has often been communicated through the symbolism of shoes in the form of educational exhibits, empathy based programming, fundraising walks or drives, and memorializing displays.

Check out these current or past activities involving shoes related to domestic violence:

In the future, I would like to create a response that uses another pair of shoes that highlights survivorship, resiliency, and new beginnings, as well as think more about how to incorporate this workshop’s prompt into my clinical work.

Thank you to Magdalena for sharing her powerful Journey Shoes idea!

Getting the Picture [VIDEOS]: Domestic Violence Awareness Month 2012

October 8, 2012

In an effort to recognize Domestic Violence Awareness Month 2012, this year I wanted to showcase some videos that share survivors’ stories, as well as educate others about domestic violence through art.

Broken Beautiful: A Portrait of Domestic Violence tells the story of survivor and founder of Be a Voice Arts Michelle Johnson Major, “whose husband took a butcher knife and slashed ninety-four of her paintings before attempting to murder her by strangling her to unconsciousness”  (2009, YouTube).  Links to Michelle’s work have been previously posted on this blog for DVAM, but the video below shares the story of her abuse and survival through her art:


Monsters in the Closet: Domestic Violence From a Child’s View– This powerful animation sponsored by The Verizon Foundation and the National Domestic Violence Hotline “sheds light on the effects of domestic violence in the home, through the eyes of a child” (2011, YouTube).


AWBW- Art as a Healing Tool– Another organization I have also featured in past DVAM posts is A Window Between Worlds and the programs they offer to help end domestic violence through art.  Here’s a peek into AWBW and their work with survivors:


Finding a Voice for Domestic Violence Survivors through Art: I was honored to have the video I created for DVAM in 2011 shown at Anna Marie’s Alliance’s (St. Cloud, Minnesota) as part of last week’s “Safety Today…Hope Tomorrow” fundraiser that included recognizing the benefits of art therapy.


If you or someone you know is in need of help, here are some local, state, and national resources to reach out to:

Ohio Department of Mental Health Art Display : Youth Exposed to Domestic Violence

October 1, 2012

Earlier this year I was invited by the Ohio Department of Mental Health (ODMH) to display some of the art from youth that I work with in individual and group art therapy at the Domestic Violence & Child Advocacy Center (DVCAC).  ODMH showcases quarterly art displays from various programs and consumers from around the state in their Columbus office at the James A. Rhodes State Office Tower.

According to the ODMH website, ODMH “works to assure access to quality mental health services for Ohioans at all levels of need and life stages”.   One of ODMH’s core beliefs is a commitment to Trauma Informed Care, as well as the Resiliency of Youth.  Check out both of these links on the ODMH website to learn more and access their recommended resources.

The display from DVCAC runs October 1 through December 31 and features art expressions from children & adolescents who have been impacted by domestic violence and are involved in group or individual art therapy through DVCAC’s community-based outreach program. Art on display explores themes related to safety, resilience, emotional expression, domestic violence prevention, and managing trauma stress. Art expressions include collage, drawing, painting, handmade papermaking, paper house making, and mask making.  Click on the image below to download a flier [PDF] about the display.

The timing of this exhibit’s start is also aligned with October being recognized as National Domestic Violence Awareness Month. Look for related DVAM posts to be featured here on Creativity in Motion throughout this month, as well as resources about domestic violence collected on my trauma informed pinterest board.

If you are in the Columbus area over the next three months, take a moment to visit ODMH and this display.  My appreciation to the youth who participated through sharing their art, feelings, and a part of their life to empower their own voice, as well as bring awareness to others about their experience.

Guest Blog Post on SpeakArtLoud | Art Therapy and Domestic Violence

October 12, 2011

Check out my recent guest blog post on SpeakArtLoud:  Using Art Therapy with Survivors of Domestic Violence.

SpeakArtLoud is an innovative social-profit organization that uses the arts to empower women and improve communities.  Learn more about the organization’s vision, mission, and values here.

Thanks so much to Sally and SpeakArtLoud for the opportunity to contribute this posting, especially during Domestic Violence Awareness Month!

Getting the Picture: Domestic Violence Awareness Month 2011

October 4, 2011

October is National Domestic Violence Awareness Month. Throughout this month, I hope to share news, resources, project, and blog posts again this year about how art is helping survivors of domestic violence and bring attention to the issue of interpersonal violence.  Here are some art-based events and projects happening that you can get involved with or spread the word about:

  • Another art-based project in the news recently is the exhibit Pearls of Wisdom.  This project in association with A Window Between Worlds and artist Kim Abeles highlights the metaphor of a pearl’s formation: “transforming memories of domestic pain into objects and shared texts that offer public lessons of courage, strength and solidarity”.  The concept expands further with The Pearls of Wisdom: End the Violence community engagement project which includes not only public exhibitions, but workshops, programming, and an online curriculum for high school teachers and college classes. You can learn more about these Pearls of Wisdom offerings here.  Also check out the Pearls of Wisdom blog and community wall, where you can create your own pearl and share it online through posting your image on the project’s blog.

If you are interested in learning more about National Domestic Violence Awareness Month, visit the Domestic Violence Awareness Project for more information.

Art as a Voice: Art Therapy with Survivors of Domestic Violence

September 14, 2011

I am putting some finishing touches on my paper presentation for the annual Buckeye Art Therapy Association (BATA) Symposium about art therapy with survivors of domestic violence, which includes my current work with women and children in a shelter setting.  I am looking forward to sharing how art therapy provides an important voice and facilitate support around key issues such as creating safety, the cycle of violence, facilitating trauma intervention as well as offers an opportunity towards understanding, coping, and hope.

Attendees will:

  • learn trauma informed considerations, common treatment goals, and art interventions to consider when working with this population;
  •  learn about the impact of domestic violence and three ways art therapy empowers survivors feel safe and tell their story;
  • be able to identify three treatment goals to utilize in art therapy when working with survivors of domestic violence;
  •  be introduced to art interventions that help address issues around safety, support, the cycle of violence, and crisis intervention.

The paper will also highlight some content forthcoming in a new chapter about art therapy and domestic violence in the Second Edition of the Handbook of Art Therapy to be published in November.  It is a sincere honor to be a co-author of this chapter and wonderful that Guildford Press wanted to include a chapter dedicated to the use of art therapy with domestic violence survivors in this new edition.

This presentation also takes place on the eve of Domestic Violence Awareness Month, which is great timing to bring additional awareness to the issue, its impact, and resources to help survivors.

I look forward to seeing friends and colleagues from across Ohio and beyond come together soon for this year’s Symposium!

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