This is a simple, engaging, ‘reader-friendly’ piece of writing which includes images to illustrate points. Here are some useful excerpts:

‘A medium in art making is the environment within which expression occurs …’ (p.19).

‘the history of materials and tools in art began with readily accessible substances. Humans created objects in stone, clay and wood. They ground pigment from plants and earth and mixed it with blood or urine …Technology throughout history has expanded to the present both in quantity, variety and certainly quality of art media’ (p. 20).

‘Our attraction and attachment to certain materials is shaped by personal history as well as the enormous influence of culture’ (p.21).

‘In order for materials in art to have effect they must attract or repel us. … When working with individuals, it is important to consider materials which fit the therapeutic goals for the person. … It may be important to work with familiar materials, nostalgic materials, new, unusual or even challenging media ’ (p.22)

Conflict/ Relatedness … ‘The use of materials together can define relatedness. When crayon and watercolour are used together on the same surface, the crayon “resists” the watercolour and interesting images are formed. The human experiences of harmony, conflict, attraction, repelling and other phenomena are symbolizedin our uses of materials when they are brought together in art’ (p. 23)

Transformation … ‘The process of changing from one state of being to another is exemplified in therapy when an individual moves from confusion to order, from inactivity to activity, dysfunction to function or from a disturbed to a more peaceful level of living’ (p.24).

‘The concept of transformation implies changes in form. The equivalence in art occurs through the creative process. The word creative suggests that something new is emerging from the union of forces that are often in opposition’ (p.24).
‘Transformation is inherent in art, therapy and in life and materials can serve as examples of this experience’ (p.24).

Experiencing the elements of art …
‘A tool acting upon a material does not act of its own power. The artist exercises the power that guides the physical material and manipulates the media until a statement that reflects the relationship between artist, tool and material is created. The finished work of art is a record, a document of the relationship between the artist and his product (p.59).

‘The product is … made up of abstract elements, symbols, marks, color, line, balance and other aspects of what the artist would call form. Form includes not only these above elements, but also the subject matter or content. Content makes a statement which can range from personal to universal in scope. The work can be about life, culture, politics … (p. 59).

‘Art therapy views the art process as a path to the unconscious, a way of mirroring inner experience as well as a form of release for those perceptions that may be best expressed through art (p. 60).

Don Seiden (2005). Mind over matter: The uses of materials in art, education and therapy (pp.19-24 and pp.59-61)