Archive for July, 2015

Posted by Miguel Juanez On July - 30 - 2015 1 Comment

Arbor Health, LLC., is an assisted living mental health facility that specializes in the mental health treatment of Veterans, with an emphasis on meaningful activities of daily living. This is a facility with very low reimbursement and had serious resident abuse problem before it was taken over by a partner of FWOP, Inc., and was very near to the Ferguson Community in St Louis where there was serious conflict and controversy.

Fie Zach is an intern at Arbor Health with a focus upon Art Therapy. He recently graduated from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago with a Master’s Degree in Art. His work focuses on sculpture, installations, video, sound and performance.

Art for soul 1

 

 

 

 

 

THE IDEA

The administrator and most of the residents are Veterans. After experiencing a severe trauma or life-threatening event, many military veterans develop symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). All the resident veterans in Arbor Health had PTSD and depression because of the War. The Veterans with PTSD have lived through a traumatic event that caused them to fear for their lives, see horrible things, and feel helpless. Bad memories of the traumatic event affect the rest of their life.

Mr. Zach Fie decided to create an image at the front of entrance that focuses upon about the Battle of Iwo Jima.   This was a major battle in which the U.S. Marines landed on and eventually captured the island of Iwo Jima from the Japanese Imperial  Army during World War II.  This is an attempt to reflect and to give Veterans a peaceful lovely home to live.

Fei Zach believes art is a reflection of human creative skill and imagination.  Picasso once said: “Art washes away from the soul the dust of everyday life.” He believes that art making itself is  therapeutic, it transcends words and triggers different parts of the brain and subconscious.  When he realized that art was such a powerful tool for helping people,  he decided to enter the healthcare field as an informal therapist  and use his art skills for the benefit of people.

CURRENT WORK DESCRIPTION

The four soldiers are painted with Acrylic and one is soldier holding an American flag. There are 5 US military badges (US Army, Marine Corps, Navy, Air Force, Coast Guard) and 6 main war country maps (German, Korea, Saudi Arabia, Vietnam, Iraq, Afghanistan) around the soldiers. For various countries, the newspaper clippings reported the events of each battlefield stories are integrated into the mural as well as the honor military ribbons which are made of wood.

Art for the Soul 1

 

 

 

 

 

PATIENT REPORT

A specific resident he worked with had a serious PTSD and depression conditions. An angry man and full of an attitude problem, a big smoker, always walking around and talking to himself. People think he is a really talented guy.  He likes to draw a lot and is really interested in painting.   Unfortunately, the veteran never had chance to go school. After Fei Zach talked to him, he has shown a lot of his sketches and explain and the stories behind his drawings.

The veteran told Fie Zach that he always can hear some sort of “noise talk” which makes him angry and gives him a headache.

RESIDENTS REACTION

When Fie Zachstart  was working  on the mural most residents just passed by and looked at it as weird. They had no idea what we were doing, but when the image gradually showed through a lot of veterans and residents came over ask us about the work and some then began to also share their own military experience Zach.

CONCLUSION

Zach believes that art is an amazing gift from God to human beings,  and Art Therapy is about the process of “art making” rather than the project itself. Art therapy is such a power tool and healing modality intended to bring together physical, emotional and spiritual care by facilitating creative ways for patients to respond to their experiences. In addition Arbor Health is slowly adding a wide range of activities to improve the social and psychological environment in the facility, e.g., gardening, fishing, pool table, dart board, ceramics,  foosball,  ping pong, and  music.

Share