Visit the Abbey of the Arts online retreat platform to access your programs:

Expressive Arts Resources

The other day I wrote about the field of the expressive arts and how discovering this resource has really augmented my work in integrating spirituality and the arts.  Here are some books I would recommend:

Spirituality and Art Therapy, edited by Mimi Farrelly-Hansen

This book has chapters written by different expressive arts practitioners from various religious and spiritual perspectives.  Each chapter explores the connections between a particular spiritual tradition and work in the expressive arts.  Some chapters are stronger than others, especially good are “Prayer, Sacraments, Grace,” “Pilgrimage: Celtic Spirituality Revisited,” and “Nature: Art Therapy in Partnership with the Earth.”

Foundations of Expressive Arts Therapy, edited by Stephen and Ellen Levine

A great foundational text providing several essays with good grounding in the theory of the expressive arts by many leaders in the field.

Art is a Way of Knowing by Pat Allen

This is a wonderful book about imagination and the arts as a way of knowing and experiencing the world and encourages taking these seriously as a spiritual practice leading to greater wisdom and insight about ourselves.

The Art Therapy Sourcebook, Cathy Malchiodi

A great resource filled with ideas and activities that could be translated to spiritual contexts.

The Art of Emotional Healing by Lucia Capacchione

Another great resource of ideas and activities for ways of using the expressive arts to explore and express our wide range of emotions.

The Creative Connection by Natalie Rogers

Natalie Rogers is the daughter of Carl Rogers, founder of Person-Centered Therapy.  This is her foundational work, providing good grounding in this approach to the expressive arts as well as lots of ideas.

I have also listed this information on our slowly growing Creating Space website resource page (scroll down for the Expressive Arts link).  Clicking on the links provided and purchasing either these or other items through Amazon helps to support our nonprofit work.

-Christine Valters Paintner

You might also enjoy

Monk in the World Guest Post: Janeen R. Adil

I am delighted to share another beautiful submission to the Monk in the World guest post series. Read on for Janeen Adil’s reflection and poem about liminality. Thresholds and doorways make for evocative images; as a monk in the world, I am drawn to a

Read More »

Preparing for Advent + Prayer Cycle Day 7

Dear monks, artists, and pilgrims,  Today we share the final two audio podcasts of our 7-day prayer cycle on the theme of The Love of Thousands. The theme for morning is on ancestral earth and deep time, honoring that our ancestors are not just our human

Read More »

Monk in the World Guest Post: Susan Blagden

I am delighted to share another beautiful submission to the Monk in the World guest post series from the community. Read on for Susan Blagden’s contemplative photographs and poems inspired by the work of Thomas Merton. As a contemplative photographer, coach and priest, I seek

Read More »

2 Responses

  1. All of these books look very interesting! I can’t wait to look them up. I’ve been enjoying your essays here. Thanks so much :)