Transforming a Community: A Collaborative Group Art Therapy Mural


  • Samantha Stevenson


mural, inpatient psychiatric setting, group art therapy, geriatric, community


This article describes the process of designing and creating a collaborative group art therapy mural with four separate art therapy groups in a geriatric inpatient psychiatric hospital setting.  Murals have multiple therapeutic benefits such as opening opportunities for discussion, building a sense of unity, enhancing the atmosphere of a facility or environment, and increasing self-esteem.  The therapeutic benefits of murals, description of the individuals, development of the concept, goals, and safety concerns will be addressed as they pertain to the geriatric population.  The reasoning behind the mural, the thought processes throughout the creation of the mural, and commentary will be discussed.

Author Biography

Samantha Stevenson

Samantha Stevenson is a Board Certified Art Therapist and member of the American Art Therapy Association.  It is her passion to enhance the lives of others through the arts as she has been influenced by the arts and their therapeutic benefits all throughout her life.  In her journey to become an art therapist, Samantha attended Kutztown University of Pennsylvania earning a Bachelor’s of Fine Arts degree and her Masters of Science in Art Therapy from Florida State University.  After graduating Florida State University, she began employment at Northeast Florida State Hospital, a psychiatric facility, as a rehabilitation therapist/art therapist in the geriatric unit.  She is currently employed as a Creative Arts Therapist at a facility that provides mental health services to at-risk youth in New Jersey.


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Special Call - Creative Placemaking - 2016