Art Therapy for Older People:
Working with Visual Memory

Course Description

Visual memory assists older people to share personal narratives about their lives. While short-term memory may be failing, longer term memory seeks expression. The use of photographs, photo collage, as well as paints, drawing materials and clay provide a variety of therapeutic gains for the elderly client. The concretisation of a therapeutic intervention assists recall from a visual starting point. The less verbal part of the brain is activated to deal with emotional expression that otherwise might not be addressed. The beneficial aspects of working with the elderly through art making processes have only recently become more known in Australia. This presentation includes ideas about activities that might be helpful, a review of recent literature and the sharing of other resources that can be utilised.

Objectives

Participants will have the opportunity to:
• Understand facts to consider when working with the ageing client;
• Gain skills in processing therapeutic art making;
• Learn effective visual interventions for in their work with the elderly.