Art Therapy uses the creative process of art making to improve and enhance the physical, mental and emotional well-being of individuals of all ages. Art Therapists are trained mental health professionals who engage children in individual and group sessions. Children and teens who participate in art therapy can find ways to express themselves that may not be possible with other activities.

Art Therapists

art therapy with a patient

  • Are master level therapists who are specially trained in art and psychology.
  • Help patients to communicate with symbols and expressions other than traditional verbal modes through the use of art media.
  • Provide a unique type of mental health service.
  • Work as primary therapists or as part of treatment teams, which include doctors, nurse practitioners, nurses, psychiatrists, psychologists, child life specialists, physical, occupational and speech therapists, chaplaincy, and social workers.
  • Work with patients ages 3 years and older, in individual sessions, dyads or small groups, which may include siblings or other family members and friends, if relevant to the treatment goals of the patient in the hospital setting.
  • With the guidance of art therapists, the patient is encouraged to reflect on and explore his or her personal imagery to work towards wellness.

(Adapted from the Buckeye Art Therapy Association)

St. Louis Children’s Hospital Provides Art Therapy Services on a referral basis. If you have any questions, please contact the St. Louis Children's Hospital Art Therapist.

Additional Art Therapy Supported Programs

For more information on Art Therapy please visit The American Art Therapy Association(AATA) or The Missouri Art Therapy Association (MATA),

Shadowing the Art Therapist

Requirements include:

  • Basic understanding of the profession of Art Therapy prior to shadowing
  • Familiarity with The American Art Therapy Association (AATA)
  • Completion of the Shadowing Request Form.
  • Comply with the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA). If selected to shadow, you will be required to sign a HIPAA confidentiality form.
  • If selected to shadow please be prepared with questions for the staff member you are shadowing.
  • Please come dressed in professional attire as well as in comfortable, closed-toe shoes.

Art Enrichment Internship

St. Louis Children's Hospital offers an Art Enrichment Internship aimed at meeting the needs of students or other individuals who are interested in pursuing a graduate degree from an accredited Art Therapy program. Learn more about our Art Enrichment Internship.