"Whenever illness is associated with loss of soul," writes Shaun McNiff, "the arts emerge spontaneously as remedies, soul medicine." The medicine of the artist, like that of the shaman, arises from his or her relationship to "familiars"—the themes, methods, and materials that interact with the artist through the creative process. Art As Medicine demonstrates how the imagination heals and renews itself through this natural process. The author describes his pioneering methods of art therapy—including interpretation through performance and storytelling, creative collaboration, and dialoguing with images—and the ways in which they can revitalize both psychotherapy and art itself.
About Shaun McNiff
Shaun McNiff is the University Professor at Lesley University in Cambridge, Massachusetts, where he has established a program in Advanced Graduate Studies in Creativity, Imagination, and Leadership. An internationally recognized figure in the area of creativity enhancement, he is the author of several books, including Trust the Process: An Artist’s Guide to Letting Go, and Art as Medicine: Creating a Therapy of the Imagination. He has also served in various senior-level leadership positions in which he has explored the integration of creativity into community life.
"This well-written book shows brilliantly the interplay between soul and sacred, art and shamanism, sickness and health. It is a mature product, combining lucid philosophy with hands-on experience, and contains profound insights into the human psyche."—Intuition
"The fast-growing field of expressive arts therapy recognizes Shaun McNiff to be its most perceptive pioneer and articulate teacher. Art As Medicine clearly displays his gifts and solidly confirms his reputation."—James Hillman