Although we use many different mediums (paint, clay, dance, poetry, etc.) and many different processes (ways of engaging with those mediums), there are four main PRACTICES that are fundamental to the work we do at the studio.
Practices are designed in such a way that they deepen over time. We are strengthened and enriched each time we do them. These four practices have the quality of taking us inward. They connect us to our inner most being and strengthen our capacity for listening and receiving from our deepest self and beyond. The great value of the arts as therapeutic and “soul-making” modalities is that these practices bypass the conditioned mind and allow the individual to drop into a deeper place, a place of aliveness that is actually the Source of creativity, fulfillment and life itself. “Dropping in” occurs because these practices are non-verbal.
Non-verbal processes originate in the right brain, and therefore, bypass the linear, analytical, left brain whose job it is to get us through life as efficiently as possible. While this is an important and useful job, we sense there is more to life. We often feel stuck in narrow channels, not knowing how to crack open the boundaries constructed by our left brain conditioning or to reach the nourishment and fulfillment that reside at deeper levels of our being.
Each practice is connected to one of the three main channels from which we receive and express: kinesthetic, auditory and visual. At Art & Soul we are interested in enhancing each person’s ability to receive and express from all channels because they all support each other. Visual art benefits from having the audio/voice channel opened up. Likewise, choreography, movement and spoken word benefit from the visual and auditory channels being open.
To create the environment for deep and meaningful explorations, careful attention is given to these elements of the creative practice:
Safety: a strong container is created for trust to grow and letting go to occur.
Non-judgment: all people, actions, expressions, feelings are held with awareness, acceptance, and loving kindness.
Connection: individuals share their experience with others.
Witnessing: each individual is seen, heard, and reflected.
Environment: the physical space is comfortable and inviting.