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Art Therapy at the National Intrepid Center of Excellence

Adrienne Stamper, an art therapist at the National Intrepid Center of Excellence (NICoE), provides a window into the process of healing through art therapy.

Art therapists are master’s-level behavioral health professionals who are trained to use art as a vehicle for non-verbal thoughts, emotions, and experiences. At NICoE, the service members have freedom of self-expression and use a wide range of media such as painting, sculpting, drawing, wood-burning, collaging, and creative writing. Stamper explains the scientific basis for why traumatic survivors struggle to put their experience into words, and how art therapy can enable them to find their voice. By working with imagery, the emotional brain, and the physical body, art therapy helps to integrate and restore a sense of control over these painful memories.

Stamper walks us through the studio, sharing stories of service members who found healing through art therapy, and shows us the faces of the invisible wounds of war.

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Last Updated: July 11, 2023
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