Book Review: Contemporary Practice in Studio Art Therapy.

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Diana Velada


‘…it is very hard to root in a constantly shifting world. In the studio we tap into a primal source, asking not only ‘who are we?’ but also and more insistently ‘how can we be “at home” in movement’ Kapitan (p.56).

 Here is a fine manifesto for the re-evaluation of studio art therapy, what defines it, its history, its significance, its variance with more clinical or psychoanalytic approaches, which for many art therapists has for some time been pre-eminent, and its future. This perspective is highlighted by Dalley in the forward when she says this book revisits ‘the healing power of art as a foundation of art therapy practice

While a studio might be thought of as a dedicated ‘art-making’ space, somewhat set apart from the ordinary demands of daily life, editors Brown, C. & Omand H. point out in their introduction that this reflects a rather privileged European and North American idea of art, rather than understanding it as ‘being embedded in communal craft activities, architecture, or religious practices for example’.

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