Art Therapy Today

While AATA’s mission is to advance art therapy as a regulated mental health profession and build a community that supports art therapists throughout their careers, we are only one of three organizations that assist art therapists with their career journeys. We hope that this post will help highlight what we offer at AATA and clarify the differences between organizations. As always, if you have questions or want to start a conversation, join us on the MyAATA Forum or contact the National Office
Christianne E. Strang PhD, ATR-BC, Nominating Committee Chair

Online voting for the 2021 Annual Election commences on Sept. 29, 2021! All voting members will receive a notice with instructions via email. Members that request a paper ballot, or those that do not have email, will receive a ballot in the mail. The full position descriptions, each candidate’s biography, and the responses they provided to questions posed by the Nominating Committee are posted in the elections section of MyAATA.

The AATA Board of Directors and the Nominating Committee extend their collective gratitude to candidates represented on this year’s ballot for their willingness to serve the Association.
Susan Boxer Kappel, MA, ATR-BC, LCAT, CGP, Conference Chair

In one month, we will be live streaming our first annual conference—on the weekend of Oct. 23-24. Have you registered yet? Now is the time to make your plans to attend AATA’s 52nd Annual Conference, Reconnecting and Visualizing Future Pathways for Art Therapy in a Diverse Society.

Calling for conference volunteers! We are looking for volunteers to facilitate the optional morning sessions that will be held each day of the conference before the official program begins. The sessions will be pre-recorded by AATA’s professional recording vendor.

It is with great sadness that we announce the passing of Sandra Graves-Alcorn, PhD, ATR-BC, LPAT, who died on Sept. 16, 2021 at the age of 78. Dr. Graves-Alcorn was an art therapy pioneer, a member of AATA since its first meeting, and retired professor of expressive therapies at the University of Louisville. She served as president of AATA from 1985 to 1987.

AATA’s National Office is looking for interns to support our work, including helping with the Art Therapy Today newsletter content and production, designing graphics for digital marketing, assisting with events, and member services. We are looking for currently enrolled graduate students with exceptional communications skills, attention to detail, and the ability to manage multiple projects. Interns are expected to contribute a minimum of six to 10 hours per week, based on a flexible schedule.

For more information, or to apply, contact Yasmin Elian at with a resume, cover letter, and academic reference.
M.A. Counseling Art Therapy Specialization
Caldwell University
The first CACREP accredited program of this type in the nation. The program fulfills educational requirements in both art therapy and mental health counseling.
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The School of the Art Institute of Chicago
Member Corner
Jessica Cabrera, BFA

For me, Hispanic Heritage Month is a celebration of diverse cultures and a reminder to reflect on Latinos' and Hispanics' contributions to the American Latino community. I show appreciation of Hispanic Heritage Month because of the sacrifice my parents endured. They gave my siblings and me the opportunity for growth and access to achieving our goals. As an Ecuadorian American, I would like to utilize art to collaborate with the Hispanic community by sharing my knowledge and giving them access to share their culture with creative art.
Member Resources

AATA’s Institute for Continuing Education in Art Therapy (ICE/AT) helps you obtain continuing education credits while you develop competencies and keep abreast of new trends in the field. And, AATA members receive a substantial discounted rate!

This online learning platform has more than 200 individual courses that offer continuing education credits. Some of the most prestigious art therapists, researchers, authors, and educators in the profession have contributed to the outstanding and diverse library. For example, check out Exploring Art Therapy Assumptions through the Lens of Neuroscience, taught by Christianne E. Strang PhD, ATR-BC.

Master of Science in Art Therapy
Mount Mary College®
Develop a sophisticated professional identity as an artist-therapist through Mount Mary University’s Master of Science in Art Therapy program. This approved program is grounded in a profound belief in the healing power of the arts and creative process. Students implement theory and practice in a wide range of clinical contexts.
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Adler University
Art Therapy in the News
Edinboro University

"Edinboro University is proud to once again join in these important festivities and celebrate Latinx Heritage Month with several events. The highlighted event in this year’s Latinx Heritage Month celebration is the “Café con Leche Panel Discussion about Latinx Cultura,” which will take place at 11:30 a.m. on Oct. 6...[Among the panelists is AATA Member,] Dr. Sheila Lorenzo de la Peña (Edinboro, Art Therapy)."
Leader Press

"The Central Texas College (CTC) Fine Arts department announced it will host an artist exhibit featuring the works of sculptor and art therapist Peter Buotte. The exhibit, “Invisible Wounds,” features a series of digitally-rendered sculptures and photographs of U.S. combat veterans who have experienced traumatic brain injury and/or post-traumatic stress. The display will be available September 14 through November 16 in the upstairs art gallery of the CTC campus library in Killeen." 

"When Miki Goerdt first came cross the phrase 'art therapy,' she was in high school back home in Japan. One day, she read about a man in the newspaper working at a nursing home doing art for the residents there. This article propelled her, then 18, to think about what art therapy is. One year later, she went to college in Iowa in the United States and studied art and psychology. Later, she majored in social work for her master's degree and the graduate level certification in art therapy."

"An art group that was inspired by the events that took place on September 11th now brings in people from all over the world. Art for Peace was started by Art Therapist Barbara Fish back in 2001 in Chicago when she was teaching. After 9/11, she invited her students over to her house to eat and make art and talk about what was going on in their life and the world."

"Virtual reality (VR) continues to expand its uses in medicine, specifically in treatments for psychological conditions like trauma, phobias and eating disorders. The technology is also emerging as a tool in creative arts therapies. In one of the first studies of its kind, researchers from Drexel University's College of Nursing and Health Professions and School of Biomedical Engineering, Science and Health Systems, examined the differences in prefrontal cortex (PFC) activation between two distinct drawing tasks in VR, including with the introduction of a calming fragrance stimulus."
Times Argus

"Studio Place Arts (SPA) has selected two local artists, Michelle Lesnak, of Montpelier, and Tracey Hambleton, of East Montpelier, for its annual competitively awarded Studio Residency Program. The SPA Studio Residency Program has offered a small studio in the art center to an emerging artist from the community for one year, free of charge, since 2015. At the conclusion of the residency, artists have shared their work in an exhibition at SPA."
UC News

"Art therapy and pet therapy have been shown to improve patients’ mood and well-being, but what happens when patients are no longer able to access these interventions? That was the question that has spawned a multidisciplinary collaborative study, led by University of Cincinnati researchers, that is looking into how a self-guided art therapy app and robotic pets affect the mood of patients."

"Art can heal. Last year CultuRunners kicked off the Healing Arts initiative as part of the World Health Organization’s Solidarity Series of Events, and MoMA launched Artful Practices for Well-Being, which integrated trauma awareness into its programming, acknowledging individual and collective traumas, many of which have been exacerbated by COVID-19. One of the first projects was an audio playlist that included collaborations with a neuroscientist, a somatic experience practitioner, a therapist, a psychiatrist, educators, and mindfulness instructors."
UAB News

"Abroms-Engel Institute for the Visual Arts will host the major exhibition exploring the works of artists within prisons in the United States and the centrality of incarceration to contemporary art and culture, on view from Sept. 17-Dec. 11."

"Sometimes it takes more than words to adequately express the complex feelings associated with difficult, sometimes taboo, topics. In an art exhibition currently on display at NorthPark Center between Dillard’s and Neiman Marcus, the works of 20 local, regional and national artists delve into the issue of child abuse and its consequences as a preview of a major art-fueled fundraiser for Dallas Children’s Advocacy Center (DCAC)."

The AATA's Art Therapy Today includes a digest of the most important news selected for the AATA from thousands of sources. Guest articles may be submitted to Publication of any guest article is at the sole discretion of the AATA. The opinions expressed and/or contents of guest articles, advertisements, and external links included in any AATA publication do not represent the positions or policies of the AATA. The AATA makes no warrenty or representation concerning the accuracy of such content.