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Click on the cover image above to read some pages of this book! A man kidnaps his two children, murders one, and attempts to kill the other. The prosecution seeks the death penalty, while the defense employs an unusual strategy to avoid the sentence. The defendant's attorneys turn to more than examples of his artwork, created over many years, to determine whether he was mentally ill at the time he committed the crimes.
Art on Trial
Detailing an outstanding example of the use of forensic art therapy in a capital murder case, David Gussak, an art therapist contracted by the defense to analyze the images that were to be presented as evidence, recounts his findings and his testimony in court, as well as the future implications of his work for criminal proceedings. Gussak describes the role of the art therapist as an expert witness in a murder case, the way to use art as evidence, and the conclusions and assessments that professionals can draw from a defendant's artworks.
He examines the effectiveness of expert testimony as communicated by the prosecution, defense, and court, and weighs the moral, ethical, and legal consequences of relying on such evidence. For professionals and general readers, this gripping volume presents a convincing account of the ability of art to reflect a damaged and dangerous psyche. A leading text on an emerging field, Art on Trial demonstrates the practical applications of an innovative approach to clinical assessment and treatment.
Art on Trial is a testament to the potent power of art as evidence.
David Gussak's masterful presentation of the case, the client, and the art explains the role and value of art therapy in a court of law. This post, Part 1, will provide: a distinction between assessing for symbolic meaning and the formal elements of a drawing; a brief argument for and against using such procedures; and my own perspectives. After a man murdered one of his children and attempted to kill the other, the prosecution sought the death penalty.
The defense team exhausted all resources available, including contracting with an art therapist to testify on the art the defendant created over his lifetime. Navigating the crossroads where art therapy, forensics, corrections and criminology meet This blog examines art therapy in the legal system to forensic settings. Research, anecdotes and philosophical musings will be detailed, from investigation using art-based assessments to therapeutic interventions. In providing the juncture between art therapy, forensics and criminology, nothing is off limits.
Back Psychology Today. Back Find Counselling. Back Get Help. Back Magazine. Subscribe Issue Archive. Back Today. Consider Sleep and Screen Time. Inflammation and the 3 Paths of Depression in Older Adults. Prison Art: Strings Are Attached Within the rigid, controlled and tedious prison environment, it is hard to believe that beautiful, creative pieces emerge for no other reason than the strong, overpowering desire to create.
Drawing Alone: Making Art in Solitary Confinement This post, written by guest blogger Jaimie Burkewitz, a graduating masters student in art therapy, explores whether allowing inmates in solitary confinement the ability to express themselves through art can help them survive the loss of stimulation and human contact, and ultimately find deeper meaning. Man's Art Convicts Him of Murder. Wait… What?!? Deftly Drawing Dexter A tense moment on the popular Showtime series "Dexter" occurs in its final season.
Inmate Mural Arts Program Part 1: Transformation Thru Unity Learning from the Philadelphia Mural Arts program see previous post the Florida Department of Corrections, prison administrators and art therapists developed a pioneering Inmate Mural Arts Program in which prison inmates would learn valuable life skills and create new opportunities by designing and completing a large mural together. Prison Murals: Inmates and Crime Victims Create Together Initially seeking to create a film to capture how art can fill the gaps that emerged from lack of resources in prisons, Cindy Burstein and Tony Heriza's film captured a new dynamic—the collaboration between prisoner and crime victim.
Art on Trial: Art Therapy in Capital Murder Cases by David Gussak
The Art of Murder ers Why are we so fascinated by the art of murderers? Venus Rising: Art Therapy Research in Prison Part 3 Continuing and expanding the research agenda introduced in the previous two posts, this post summarizes and provides access to the ongoing studies, demonstrating the effectiveness of art therapy in prison with both male and female inmates. Taking Flight: Art Therapy Research in Prison Part 2 Building upon the success of the pilot study that examined the effectiveness of art therapy with a prison population, this post summarizes and provides access to the follow up study.
Healing Our Achilles Heel: Art Therapy Research in Prison While previous posts have touted the benefits of art therapy in prison, some readers have asked, but where is the evidence?