• Art psychotherapy: Understanding the experiences of first language Welsh speaking clients receiving art psychotherapy through the medium of English in north Wales

      Keeling, June J.; Roberts, Gwawr W. (University of ChesterGwynedd Council, 2013-10)
      The topic of bilingualism in art therapy has been recognised as an important one for further investigation within the art psychotherapy literature; particularly, the need for qualitative research exploring the experiences of clients working bilingually. The aim of this qualitative study was to explore the experiences of bilingual (Welsh-English) first-language Welsh-speaking clients receiving art psychotherapy through the medium of English in north Wales. The study used a mix of phenomenology and heuristic methodology with art-based inquiry, since it required the researcher to have had a direct personal connection with the topic of inquiry. Data were obtained from two study participants through the conducting of semi-structured interviews, which also included directive image-making. A thematic analysis identified three theoretical themes: the therapist’s Welsh language awareness; the client’s language identity, and communication. Each theme is discussed together with important sub-themes. Based on the empirical findings the study concludes that receiving art psychotherapy through the medium of English (if the recipient is a Welsh-English bilingual) does impact upon the therapeutic experience and presents a number of key recommendations regarding areas for future research, practical implications for art psychotherapist training and art psychotherapy practice in a bilingual setting.