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Art as Relational Encounter: An Ostensive Communication Theory of Art Therapy

05 November 2018

In this article Neil Springham and Val Huet write about ostensive communication theory and the development of epistemic trust in art therapy...

 

Biopsychosocial theory is strengthening psychotherapy by focusing on interactions that engage the attachment system. Art therapy has the potential to align coherently with current theory provided it addresses the value of art in engaging with the attachment system.

This article describes an interpersonal theory of art therapy based on a model of ostensive communication that supports the attachment system as a mechanism of change in the art therapy triangular relationship of client, therapist, and art object.

A clinical case vignette, derived from a client's description of her art therapy experiences in an audio-image interview, illustrates ostensive communication theory and the development of epistemic trust in art therapy.

 

Written by written by Neil Springham & Val Huet

Published in Art Therapy: Journal of the American Art Therapy Association

Thank you to Taylor & Francis for making this article free access until December 2018

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