Art Therapy

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Art Therapy

Dedicated to encourage healing through the arts, Survivors Art Foundation is a 501(C)(3) non-profit organization committed to empowering trauma survivors with effective expressive outlets via internet art gallery, outreach programs, national exhibitions, publications and development of employment skills

"The mission of ARIA is to empower survivors of sexual abuse and to support the healing process by transforming internal suffering into personal works of art. We lay a foundation of hope by both providing forums for artistic self-expression and spreading awareness of sexual abuse."

(AATA) is a national association dedicated to the belief that the creative process involved in the making of art is healing and life enhancing. Founded in 1969 AATA is a not-for-profit organization of approximately 4,750 professionals and students that has established standards for art therapy education, ethics, and practice. AATA committees actively work on professional and educational development, national conferences, regional symposia, publications, governmental affairs, public awareness, research, and other activities that enhance the practice of art therapy.

"We invite trauma survivors and their supporters to enter their original heart felt artistic works in this event. We are currently calling for participants and presenters who wish to join in the fun...The event is inspired for the need in the community to support survivors and to seek additional resources and contacts to help in recovery. Once aware of supportive resources, individuals may follow up with any of the fine contacts from this event for more in-depth help, education and support. You know what you would give to keep just one person from suffering. Healing through Creativity promises to be a life changing experience."



"SAAV is committed to uniting survivors of sexual assault and providing them with the necessary tools to support one another through the healing process of integrating the experience of violence into their lives. Using art and all forms of creative expression, SAAV will empower survivors to shed shame and secrecy, unifying a new community that speaks out to raise awareness of violence. The SAAV Community will work to educate society on the issues surrounding rape, and serve in an advisory capacity to those in the media and entertainment industry."

"PhotoTherapy Techniques use therapy clients' own personal snapshots and family photos (and the feelings, memories, thoughts and information these evoke) as catalysts for therapeutic communication and healing."


Survivor art projects



Related links: Telling your story


Books on Creative Healing from Sexual Abuse and Rape



Polley, Dana Lynn (2003). Exploring autophotography as a complementary therapy for female rape survivors. Dissertation Abstracts International: Section B: The Sciences and Engineering. 64(5-B), 2003. pp. 2400. link


"Qualitative analysis of these interviews provided an in-depth case study that illuminated various topics and themes. Through the course of the project, the participant discussed the role rape played in her intimate relationships as well as how this event dramatically affected her self-esteem, sense of safety and identity. The autophotography project enabled the participant to connect with her perceptions and emotions following the traumatic aftermath of her sexual assault. By reflecting upon visual images and written responses, the participant was able to probe, explore and decipher her feelings, both positive and negative in response to how she viewed herself, 'who she was' and what that particular meaning held. In addition, the participant was encouraged to assume the element of control over her body that was compromised during her sexual assault."


Knafo, Danielle (2000). Revelations and rage: Violence against women in the work of women artists. Violence Against Women. 6(6), pp. 661-681.


"Multiple examples illustrate the ways women artists have employed their art to express their feelings, to educate the public, and to heal and empower themselves in an attempt to cope with and overcome traumatic experiences related to violence committed against them."


Resources to research this subject:

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Search terms: rape crisis

Related links: Victim blame


Macdonalds, J. (2004). World Book Encyclopedia. United States of America: World Book Inc.

rape. (2006). Encyclopædia Britannica. Retrieved May 2, 2006, from Encyclopædia Britannica Premium Service.

Smith, M. D. (2004). Encyclopedia of Rape. USA: Greenwood Press.

Sedney, M., "rape (crime)." Grolier Multimedia Encyclopedia. Scholastic Library Publishing, 2006 <> (February 1, 2006).



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