“I have chosen to present a form of visual research based on my practice as an art therapist.
Central to the therapeutic process in this practice is the making of the image to hold, facilitate and process the understanding of a persons inner world, alongside the therapeutic relationship that exists between client, therapist and art work. As an art therapist, holding and then coming to know your clients internal world is based on countertransference (the emotional response of the therapist to the clients contribution, verbal or in the image), observation and verbal engagement, it is not often that an art therapist will make images alongside their patient. This is so that the space can be primarily for the client and the therapists’ own inner world is not revealed/takes precedent.
I am interested in the visual research of clients’ images in the after-therapy space as a way to debrief some often intense and complex feelings and also as a way to engage with and re-search their images visually, without words using my countertransference, observational responses to the image as document of client experience. Responding to and then coming to know the visual relationship between the image of a client and my response image, by engaging in this research process and looking at the images alongside each other engages a non-verbal dynamic and research process that is inherent to but, not often addressed in this work.
I have found that doing this enables a much deeper understanding of my own therapeutic responses to a client and my image acts as a space to review, investigate and explore what is happening in the therapeutic space where there are no words to use to describe.”
Kate Dodd HPCSA registered Art Therapist
see visual research