Etherington Reader, Arnell

Chasing windmills for truth…using doll-making to explore where cross-culture meets shadow

Arnell Etherington Reader

This workshop engages in art psychotherapy cross-cultural doll-making, considering the intersection of where our shadow - the dark side, the unlived parts of our self - becomes activated as we approach our cross-cultural loved ones, acquaintances, and clients.  “The tendency to see one’s shadow ‘out there’ in one’s neighbor or in another race or culture is the most dangerous aspect of the modern psyche.” (Johnson, 1986, p. 27)   Carl Jung believed that: “The shadow is a moral problem that challenges the whole ego-personality, for no one can become conscious of the shadow without considerable moral effort.  To become conscious of it involves recognizing the dark aspects of the personality as present and real” (Storr, 1983, p. 91).  The shadow holds both negative and positive aspects of our self that have not adequately come into consciousness.  We may lose some aspects of our Self as we deny others because “…projection is always easier than assimilation” (Johnson, 1986, p. 32).  The recognition of this as arts therapies practitioners is of noteworthy consequence.  

Participants may come to understand shadow more clearly, explore their own comfort zones with shadow material and cross-cultural issues, consider the impact of the shadow and cultural prejudice on work as an arts psychotherapist, and consider various global problems involving shadow projection and its influence on the general populations who may seek or require psychotherapeutic interventions.

Participants will be able to

  • identify aspects of their shadow, considering how it operates in their personal/professional lives. 
  • identify ways that client projection/shadow material may be appropriately incorporated in our work in cross cultural domains.
  • experience the art process as a modality for personal expression and exploration fostering culturally sensitive self-awareness.



Arnell Etherington Reader Ph.D., MFT, ATR-B.C. is Professor Emeritus at the Graduate Art Therapy Psychology Department, Notre Dame de Namur University in California lecturing for 28 years.  She continues teaching NDNU’s International Art Therapy class in the UK, Art Therapy Ph.D. and Masters classes.  Having moved to the UK eight years ago, she now lectures at Art Therapy Northern Programme, has a small private practice in Wokingham, and offers Living Art weeklong painting workshops.  She is a licensed art psychotherapist and clinical psychologist in both the US and UK.


Recent Publications

2018:  Continuing Education Workshop, Notre dame de Namur University. Parting is such sweet sorrow or is it?  Endings in Art Therapy.

2017:  Global Art Therapy. In: Carolan, R. & Backos, A. (eds) Emerging Perspectives in Art Therapy: Trends, Movements, and Developments. Rutledge, NYC.  Chapter on.

2017:  Presentation: Parting is such sweet sorrow or is it?  Endings in Art Therapy..American Art Therapy Conference

2016:  Northern California Art Therapy Conference, workshop on Patrilineal Doll-Making

2016:  Goldsmith University International Art Therapy Conference, London Workshop on Closing the Art Therapy Space