Art therapy students study trauma and art in Germany and Czechia

Caldwell University Students getting ready for their lunch during their trip to to Germany and Czechia June 11 to 20.

As part of the “Treatment of Trauma” course developed and taught by Dr. Marie Wilson, coordinator of art therapy programs and professor, the group visited sites such as the Prinzhorn Collection at the University of Heidelberg Psychiatric Clinic, which is named after art historian and psychiatrist Hans Prinzhorn, who was educated in medical science during World War I and sought to merge his two disciplines after the war. After joining the staff, Prinzhorn was tasked with expanding the arts program at the University of Heidelberg psychiatric clinic. Under his direction, a collection of artworks by patients who suffered from mental illness grew to over 6,000 pieces by more than 450 patients. The collection is the first of its kind in the world. Art therapy students at Caldwell study this collection in introductory graduate and undergraduate coursework. The visit to the museum, said Annette Vaccaro, coordinator of art therapy programs and assistant professor, “allowed students to experience the true power of art in transcending cultural boundaries.”


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