Our One Book program this evening, Art and Journaling to Heal the Heart, will cover a powerful method that assists people recovering from grief. Art therapy clients “use art media, the creative process, and the resulting artwork to explore their feelings, reconcile emotional conflicts, foster self-awareness, manage behavior…reduce anxiety, and increase self-esteem.” (From the American Art Therapy Association.) The profession’s methods are proven effective across a wide variety of clients, and can certainly benefit those grieving from the loss of a loved one. Our panelists include an Art Therapist as well as a hospice chaplain.
Is Chast herself using the creation of her book, Can’t We Talk about Something More Pleasant?, as a way to grieve her parents’ deaths? Of course it is filled with humor and wit, but also with darker moments of anxiety and loss. Even within the book, we’ll find Chast, in moments of great stress, returning home to her drawing desk, anxious to create. We’ll also find other pieces of artwork in different media, somewhat unexpected, tucked into the book–photographs and drawings–that help her to chronicle her experience, yes, but maybe they also benefit her personally. The drawings near the end of the book, of her mother, seem the strongest testament to this.
The good thing is that art doesn’t just benefit “artists”–it benefits all of us. Learn more about the healing that can happen when we let ourselves create–Central Library, 6 pm.