Creating response art became a regular practice used to reflect on my experiences in Cambodia. On a daily basis, I found myself drawn to hands: brought together to show respect with a bow, gesturing a connection with a stranger, reflecting strength and wisdom through a lifetime of use – washing, blessing, healing, creating, holding, and embracing. My drawings capture the sentiment of some of these daily observations.
Additionally, as part of the closing ceremony to mark the end of our time together in Cambodia, Sue gave us each a small piece of Cambodian clay and asked us to create an image of our therapist identity. A similar theme continued and two hands joined together emerged from the clay to symbolize the many relationships developed in Cambodia through the art process. In my therapist identity, after three weeks of serving and learning, I have come to strongly believe in art’s ability to build relationships; bringing us together, hand in hand, even in the face of challenging histories and cultural differences.
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