Art Experience Offers Free Art Therapy

Staff Report

As a part of the Art Experience’s art therapy programs for teenager girls, Pathfinders, each girl and her partner will create masks for use later in the self-reflection exercise.

The Art Experience in Fayetteville is designed to offer youth a place for healing and growth through the expressive arts and play. Staffed by local therapist Jo Ann Kaminsky, other art therapists, play therapists, and puppeteers, they work with the community to fund free therapy programs, and find youth that need their help.

Many Fayetteville residents know about the giant puppets of The Art Experience from First Night and Puppets in the Park, to be held on Oct. 18. But the agency offers more. The Art Experience is a nonprofit founded to bring therapeutic art services to those who otherwise could not afford such services.

“Art is a very powerful way to express feelings, ideas and memories,” said Director Jo Ann Kaminsky. “In a safe therapeutic setting created by a professional therapist, people can also use their art making to help them find solutions to issues in their lives.”

Each year she holds a fundraiser for the following year’s therapy programs. The fourth annual fundraiser for therapeutic art programs at The Art Experience will be held at Greenhouse Grille, 481 S. School Ave., in Fayetteville on Sunday, April 13 from 5 to 8 p.m.

“Nurture the Art Experience” is a benefit event with jazz by the talented Claudia Burson Trio and tasty treats by local chefs. There will be door prizes, a silent auction full of nurturing items, a hands-on art activity with a backdrop of images from The Art Experience displaying the power of art making.

Proceeds from the benefit will fund “Pathfinders,” an ongoing art group for teen girls led by Kaminsky, free to participants; and an art therapy group for children experiencing chronic illness. We plan to open a similar group for boys in the near future.

The benefit is $15 at the door and there will be a cash bar. For more information about the event or The Art Experience go to or


Categories: Galleries