SAVE THE DATE: MPS Art Therapy Fall Conference

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Critical Engagement: Art and Community

Keynote speaker Pablo Helguera (Mexico City, 1971) is a New York based artist working with installation, sculpture, photography, drawing, socially engaged art and performance. Helguera’s work focuses in a variety of topics ranging from history, pedagogy, sociolinguistics, ethnography, memory and the absurd, in formats that are widely varied including the lecture, museum display strategies, musical performances and written fiction.

Free for SVA students, faculty, staff, alumni, and on-site supervisors.

More details coming soon!

Registration Information

Posted in Alumni, Conference, Professional Development, Special Programs and Projects, Students, Workshops

Information Session for Prospective Applicants: Saturday, October 15, 12-2pm

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Posted in Alumni, Faculty, Professional Development, Students

MPS Art Therapy Alums Working at Rikers Island

Lesley Achitoff (Class of 2004) and Katie Hinson (Class of 2010) recently discussed their work at Rikers Island with Tess Thackara at Artsy.

Every weekday morning, Katie Hinson drives across the long bridge from the tip of Astoria, Queens, to the penitentiary on Rikers Island. She passes through three security checkpoints and heads to the women’s jail. Hinson is neither a correctional officer nor an administrator; she is among a handful of therapists who have dedicated themselves to helping Rikers inmates through making art.

For Hinson, each day consists of three to four one-hour group art therapy sessions with the inmates—or patients, as they’re referred to by the therapists. “When they know that I’m coming, they’re all seated in the dayroom,” Hinson told me when we met, along with the island’s art therapy supervisor Lesley Achitoff, in Astoria in June. “They’re all really invested, it’s kind of awesome,” Hinson continues. “I’ve started to take requests for music, which has been a great component. It’s something they’ve been able to choose, because they don’t otherwise have any choice for anything. I put on music and they come up and grab materials.”

Posted in Alumni

Fall 2016 Lecture Series Save the Dates

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Posted in Alumni, Faculty, Professional Development, Special Programs and Projects


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Posted in Exhibition, Faculty

TEXTURE Exhibition

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Posted in Alumni, Exhibition, Professional Development, Special Programs and Projects, Students

Fountain House Gallery Fundraiser

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Posted in Exhibition

Class of 2016 Thesis Presentations

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Posted in Faculty, In Class, Professional Development, Students

‘TODAY’ Show: April 19-28

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Posted in Alumni, Exhibition, Professional Development, Special Programs and Projects

This Week: Reflections on a Collaborative Art Process


Friday, March 25, 6:30-8pm
Community Lecture
Seen and Heard: Reflections on a Collaborative Art Process
Gemma Burgio and Valeria Koutmina
133/141 West 21 Street, Room 101C
Lectures are FREE to the public. CEC’s available for ATR-BC’s.



This talk is born out of Gemma Burgio’s and Valeria Koutmina’s collaborative residency at the School of Visual Arts, February-March 2015. The project employed textile arts, mixed media, and written narratives to explore attachment, spontaneity, and empathic resonance. What emerged was a surprising dance between two individuals, a vacillating entity impacted directly by the participation and presence of the artists. Setting out to answer several questions about the nature of collaboration, communication and relationships, the process culminated in an oeuvre of several works which showcased the qualities of our collaborative efforts and the need for presence that was uncovered. Since that time, the work has been dismantled but the dialogue between the artists continues. It too has changed shape as we each hone our craft and develop the process individually. Join us for reflections and reactions to this experience and the applications it may have in individual and group art therapy practices.


Gemma Burgio, ATR-BC, LCAT is an SVA Art Therapy alumna. Following graduation, Gemma worked in the Outpatient Mental Health Clinic at St. Luke’s-Roosevelt Hospital and the Comprehensive Adolescent Rehabilitation and Education Service program (CARES), a therapeutic high school within the Mt. Sinai-St. Luke’s Hospital system in New York City. Gemma is currently in private practice in Ditmas Park, Brooklyn, an Art Therapy consultant at the Freedom Institute, and a candidate at the Center for the Study of Anorexia and Bulimia (2017), within the Institute for Contemporary Psychotherapy.


Valeria Koutmina, ATR-BC, LCAT is an SVA Art Therapy alumna. Her practice includes working with children, adolescents, and adults with special needs, mental illness, and trauma. Recently, she has introduced elements of dance and play therapies to her repertoire. Valeria’s international work includes teaching a workshop in Moscow, Russia, and most recently becoming an ambassador of the Red Pencil Humanitarian Mission which took her to Lebanon.

Posted in Alumni, Exhibition, Professional Development, Special Programs and Projects