I Claim You as My Own
This gallery of images and video which accompany the masters in art therapy and counseling (MAATC) graduate exhibit at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago (SAIC) Jan 2024.
My final thesis exploring my familial story of intergenerational trauma will be complete May 2024.
Artist statement: I am a seeker of my own internal equinox. A seeker of the light and dark balance within my psyche through an intuitive image making process grounded in collage, painting, hand embellished fiber works, and mixed media installation. I seek to create images/objects from my embodied experience as I struggle toward an authentic expression. Somewhere between the sweeping scope of a fairy tale and the intimacy of a diary, my work attempts to recenter myself as the hero of my own story.
In my thesis work, I am conceptualizing Intergenerational trauma (IT) as ungrieved grief, which is passed down in the family and manifests as various disorders in subsequent generations. Through exploring my own family’s IT story, supported by existing IT research, I created an arts based grieving protocol that can explore, shift and contain stuck negative family narratives. My thesis research also informed by years of my art practice where I explored my experiences of mental illness particularly as a mother.
My emerging art therapist identity has expanded my possibilities for new material explorations which I have incorporated into my art/research process i.e. family photographs, nature elements and boxes. Through this work, I seek to affirm my commitment to the creative process which I believe can resolve grief and lay out an action plan to explore intergenerational trauma themes. The desired outcome of this work is to inspire others to become curious about their own family secrets/stories through creative action and to add to my voice to the canon of lived experiences of psychiatric survivors.