Clark and her impressive co-authors have created a gem: a book that concretely demonstrates how expressive arts therapists in dozens of clinical settings help troubled and dysregulated clients to personally connect with crucial skills and therapeutic processes in DBT. The case studies alone are worth the price of admission. It inspired me to learn how these modalities help clients to personalize and play with such important concepts as emptiness, mindfulness, dialectics, radical acceptance, metaphor, and so many others. If I could start over in my DBT career, I would immerse myself in the uses of poetry, song, visual arts, clay-based art, and artistic collaborations to bring home the evidence-based treatment to which I have devoted my career. This is a wonderful book with rich detail and illustrations of some of the work the clients have done.
This book provides an interesting and useful insight into the use of DBT and art therapy in the treatment of people with severe or chronic mental health issues. There are clear presentations and examples of how to apply the method with different collectives.
I thank Susan Clark for inviting me to learn about DBT-informed art therapy, something I was reluctant to do since I was aware of an explicitly negative bias. I now realize that my ideas were actually distorted, and am delighted to recommend that art therapists explore the creative interventions in this inspiring volume.