home first back 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 forward

says that the client saw in her the mother she would have liked. On giving away her art objects,
the therapist comments

Her ability to give away something worth while she had made helped to balance her
feelings of emptiness and lack of self. The reality of the art materials brought her into
contact with her own reality from which she felt cut off. 'Everything you make is beautiful
because you are real, I am all imagination,' she once said to me sadly ([1994] p158).

Barbara Carban says that C's personal appearance was 'always a surprise and at times stunning'
([1994] p158). In the group art therapy sessions 'C. produced work which expressed her desire for
more integration', but in her individual sessions

her images expressed her sexuality and her destructiveness directed against herself. Her
bodily image often appeared headless, dismembered and androgynous. Because of their
extreme nature, these images are not included here ([1994 p159).

Why not? Why not her 'extreme' reaction to societies image of her as a black woman? There are
many images of white faces with black features. Yet there are many issues concerning the
idealised white woman/ mother in contrast with the negation of the black woman/ mother that
are not being addressed here. However, in the final picture we see a black woman with a black
face. Has client C. seen her own reality in the face of the barren landscape provided by the white
art therapist? The therapist is triumphant about the outcome of the case. I am not so sure.

Of the articles I read, the only one I enjoyed, or felt any empathy with, was Colin Teasdale's
recent article in Inscape where he is struggling with the language of colour in trying to translate
the experience of his mixed-race client, Ben.

Is art therapy and psychotherapy relevant to black people diagnosed with schizophrenia? Yes, if
the therapist will address the issue of colour.