An Expressive Arts Approach to Healing Loss and Grief

An Expressive Arts Approach to Healing Loss and Grief
Presenter: Dr Irene Renzenbrink

Recorded: 26th August 2021

Webinar Overview: An Expressive Arts Approach to Healing Loss and Grief

This webinar will introduce core concepts and practices of Expressive Arts Therapy. This approach uses 'all of the arts' and 'artistic retellings' in helping people to discover imaginative and artistic resources that promote resilience in loss and bereavement. This webinar has been designed for helping professionals from all disciplines who wish to work more imaginatively and creatively in assisting grieving and bereaved people in a variety of circumstances.

Learning Outcomes:

At the end of this webinar, participants should be able to:

  • Define expressive arts therapy and its intermodal characteristics
  • Describe the core concepts of ‘poses’ and ‘decentering’
  • Learn how to assist clients to finish ‘unfinished business’ through poetic writing
  • Describe how an expressive arts therapy approach restores capacity in a problem saturated situation
  • Identify arts-based self-care practices

Presenter Bio: Dr Irene Renzenbrink

Irene Renzenbrink is an Australian social worker and pioneer in the field of grief and bereavement care. Having worked in hospitals, palliative care services and in the funeral industry since the early 1970's she served as State and National President of the National Association for Loss and Grief for many years. Internationally, she has worked as an advisor for the Irish Hospice Foundation and conducted workshops in Canada, USA, and the UK. While living in Canada Irene studied art therapy at the Vancouver Art Therapy Institute in 2010, and teaches the institutes online course, Art of Loss. In 2018, she was awarded a PhD (magna cum laude) in Expressive Arts Therapy by the European Graduate School in Saas Fee, Switzerland. Author of many journal articles and book chapters, Irene's edited book "Caregiver Stress and Staff Support in Illness, Dying and Bereavement was published by Oxford University Press in 2011. Her recent publication for Jessica Kingsley Publishers, An Expressive Arts Approach to Healing Loss and Grief: Working Across the Spectrum of Loss with Individuals and Communities bridges the two fields of grief and expressive arts therapy and includes examples of the healing power of the arts across a wide spectrum of loss including community disaster and the COVID-19 pandemic. Irene is a faculty member of the Portland Institute for Loss and Transition and has been a member of the prestigious International Work Group on Death, Dying and Bereavement since 1997. She now lives in an inner-city retirement village in Melbourne.

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