Wednesday, October 7 , 2015, 1:41 am | Fair 59º

‘CALM at Heart’ to Showcase Healing Through Art

By Jennifer Guess for CALM |

This month, CALM will host the first-ever “CALM at Heart — Healing Through Art,” a new event to celebrate the healing power of art, especially in treating child trauma, and to support its Art Therapy Program.

CALM at Heart will take place 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Friday, Jan. 18 in the La Pacifica Ballroom at the Coral Casino, 1260 Channel Drive in Santa Barbara.

In conjunction with this special event, and to reinforce the powerful theme of healing through art, CALM called upon the local art community to submit artwork to be considered for an exclusive collection curated by a jury of CALM at Heart committee members — Ro Snell Sanders, Tom Stanley and Paul Guido.

Thanks to the generosity of Frank Goss, and the Sullivan Goss Gallery, the CALM at Heart collection will be unveiled this Thursday, Jan. 3, at a First Thursday event from 5 to 8 p.m. at the Arts & Letters Café, 7 E. Anapamu St. in Santa Barbara, and will remain on display on the walls of the restaurant until the event on Jan. 18. The collection will then be displayed at the CALM at Heart event, where it will ultimately be auctioned.

The collection consists of 20 pieces, and can also be viewed online in a virtual gallery. The collective theme for the artists was their interpretation of art as healing, and how it relates to the vital work that CALM does to help heal victims of abuse and neglect.

At the event on Jan. 18, in addition to viewing the art collection on display, CALM at Heart guests will get the chance to participate in a creative painting experience courtesy of The Painted Cabernet, enjoy an elegant lunch and live auction, and most importantly, learn more about the sciences of art therapy from CALM’s certified art therapist, Christine Scott, MA, ATR.

Art therapy is a modality of psychotherapy in which clients, facilitated by the art therapist, use art media, the creative process and the resulting artwork to explore their feelings, reconcile emotional conflicts, reduce anxiety and increase self-esteem. The power of art therapy allows many CALM clients, both child and adult, to release pain and express emotions that had once been deeply buried within.

CALM’ss Art Therapy Program has helped many victims of abuse, for example “Angelica,” a 17-year-old girl who was sexually assaulted by an adult male relative when she was only 10. Angelica began drinking, doing drugs, failing school, acting out and working hard to suppress her feelings. She was referred to CALM, where she began to work through her past in the Art Therapy Program, led by Scott. Through this unique treatment, Angelica was able to express deeply buried emotions and access the pain she had repressed for too many years. Through her paintings, she was able to discharge painful memories and move them from inside her mind to the exterior, where she could see them with more objectivity and ultimately, release them.

Statistics reveal that individuals who benefit from CALM’s art therapy move beyond their hardships and go on to succeed in their lives. Angelica is now sober, drug free and in a healthy relationship. She is studying psychology and aspires to be a counselor when she grows up. She considers herself a wounded healer and wants to help other children who have survived sexual abuse.

Tickets for CALM at Heart are $150 for an individual, or two tickets for $250. Sponsorship opportunities are also available and include Museum ($10,000), Gallery ($5,000), Showcase ($2,500), Exhibitor ($1,000) and Patron ($500) levels.

For more information about CALM at Heart — Healing through Art, or about CALM’s Art Therapy services, click here or call 805.965.2376.

— Jennifer Guess is a publicist representing CALM.

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