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16 Days: Art created by healing domestic violence survivors on display

submitted December 04, 2014 by Matthew Ellis   |   comments
<h1>16 Days: Art created by healing domestic violence survivors on display</h1>

“I never thought something like that could come out of me.”

At many of our conferences, we have featured an art therapy component, whether it is beadmaking, Anglican rosaries, or a sacred art workshop. In Billings, MT a group of domestic violence survivors have turned to art as a way of helping them to heal. 

From the Billings Gazette (MT):

That’s how Wanda Gates says she reacted to the drawings she created during an eight-week art class for survivors of domestic violence.

“It baffles your own self,” she said.

Her drawings, and those of 13 other women, were on exhibit Monday in the Billings Clinic cafeteria and will soon be displayed downtown for others to see.

For survivors of domestic abuse, making art can help the healing process.

“When all else fails, and you have no words, art is so therapeutic,” Gates said.

Gates, a jaunty Virginia native who pokes fun at her own vernacular, hasn’t always seen potential in herself. She grew up in poverty, has had a series of abusive relationships and struggled with problems like substance abuse.

For years, she said, her life was a story of learning to survive, rather than to grow.

An exhibition and reception was held Monday by the Zonta Club of Billings, a local chapter of the international organization that advocates for women, as part of a campaign against gender violence and to celebrate survivors’ resilience.

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For more information, visit Zonta Says No to Violence Against Women.