The Old School Food Project
The Old School Food Project was a project created to celebrate the end of my school year practicum for my Expressive Art Therapy Program.
Youth are a fundamental piece of the reason I am pursuing a career in Expressive Art Therapy. Understanding that their creativity is limitless and their imaginations have extraordinary capacity, we created a space for them to freely explore their artistic expression with no limitations. The goal was to create a space for them to feel comfortable, heard, and encouraged. Where colouring outside the lines would not be frowned upon but embraced and acknowledged. An environment to experiment, share stories, and build confidence.
The students had requested we work with “bad for you snack”, so we decided I should bring in old school snacks from the late 60’s. Now the 60’s was the time of the Jetsons, Nasa and a whole lot of astronaut food. All I could possibly think of was Red Dye Number 5 and preservatives to take you to the moon.
In the realm of playing, there are a lot of vital factors. Being left out and isolation are some of the emotions in which people of any age can resonate with. The beauty of this project was there were no teams, no rules, and no one was excluded.
Every youth had a different interpretation and interacted with the medium in their own unique way. From deconstructing Oreo’s, Poke installation art, and the Warhol approach with Pringles the room was filled with excitement.
With these interactions, I found to understand that every single student participating was benefiting in their own unique way. It is never the end result that concerns me, it is the journey in which each person has throughout the process.
After completing this, the students were able to take part in a feast of their own creation. Expressive Art Therapy does not always involve fancy paintbrushes and art supplies. Sometimes all it takes is Red Dye Number 5 and preservatives to take you to the moon.