The most important work we can do, individually and globally, is the healing of traumas so that we don’t pass them down to future generations. This blog is a working tool to contribute to this good work.
*Age 8 – The Reindeer Envelope – My Own Art Work Analyzed By Me – The Art Therapist
I always told my art therapy clients that just as it is nearly impossible to tell a story from a single word, it is very difficult to tell a story from a single artistic image. When I worked with clients, all pieces were dated and given a number on the back of the image so we could always tell in what order the pictures were created on a given day. Only in this way can the order of the images allow the fuller context and the larger story to be told. The images, following one another in creation, are then like words in a sentence, sentences in a story so that the context unfolding over time becomes a part of the IMAGE itself.
This single ‘piece’ in fact has three separate facets that can be read as if they were three images.
I of course cannot remember making this envelope presented below. Yet at the same time when I pick it up and hold it in my hands, when I look at it, I am reclaiming a part of myself, of my own her-story that belongs to the creation and the existence of this very small piece of art work.
Please note: The formatting on this blog is inconsistent when it comes to adding text with illustrations. To guarantee that my words did actually appear below, I had to enter them in the way they appear below. Wouldn’t be my choice, but at least the words are there!!
I cannot tell what happened as I wrote ‘To Mother” — did I cross it out? Something noticeable happens there — and I’m not sure that it indicates anything ‘good’ or happy!
Overall I am impressed with the really straightforward way my inner psyche communicated itself through this image. Even though it shows a definite ‘split’ between worlds here, between areas of the image — and what is contained in what area — even though it shows the issue of being cornered, in corners (where I spent thousands of my childhood hours) — even though there’s an isolated flower looking like it’s falling over, it might not be! It might be making its own way into the future in its own world of sustaining life in its own defined flower pot world!
The colors used for the diamonds and triangles are not informative to me because the are probably tied to the seasonal motive of the envelope (I wish I had the card here that went with it!). However, they are stating to me, as loudly as they possibly could, that my inner self, my spiritually old and wise soul self, was perfectly aware that I lived in a world where fundamental issues pertaining to the splitting of good from evil played a profound role.
While it was certainly unfortunate that I was so abused as a child, it is at the same time an amazing miracle that I was evidently so able to find ways to preserve my essential selfhood. If I had to ‘dissociate’ myself on the other side of the (pencil) borderline from the world of “To Mother,” then so be it.