Theses Doctoral

How Active Engagement in Art Assists the Artist in the Process of Self-awareness

Ahmadi, Mohamad Javad

This dissertation is a phenomenological study on the origin of expressive arts as an innate human need rooted deeply in the psyche in order to grasp and relate to the human condition. Carl Gustav Jung said, “Life has no rules and that is its mystery.” Art compensates for the chaos that originates and often rules life.

The history of art and its evolution in society was explored to paint a picture of the experiences that dominate and leave permanent etchings of the complexities, attachments, and traumas on the psyche. I explored the history of art and its ability to stimulate curiosities, discoveries, and learning.

Additionally, I followed the birth of art education and its crossroads within the discovery of the unconscious mind and Jungian psychology. I followed the effects of the unconscious mind and psychology on art and art education, the ecological agents of the Industrial Revolution, the birth of the middle class, and the new accessibility of art. I also discussed the Industrial Revolution and its impact on pushing the artist to new interior boundaries of altered states and the birth of abstract art.

Moreover, I looked at expressive art, painting, poetry, and sculpture as the foreground to discover the psychic energy and complexes that stimulate and inspire the artist. I presented eight artist interviews randomly chosen from different backgrounds, specialties, and age. The data analysis process allowed me to gain insights into the artists’ perceptions of how art has enriched the development of their psyches and their lives.


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More About This Work

Academic Units
Interdisciplinary Studies in Education
Thesis Advisors
Miller, Lisa Jane
Hafeli, Mary
Ed.D., Teachers College, Columbia University
Published Here
June 2, 2021