Copyright 2016
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Peter Christenson Is Peter Christenson

Peter T. Christenson
b. 1979, Royal Oak, MI

peter@leftofcentre.org

psy+chol+o+gar+tist [sahy-kol-uh-gar-tist]
{Graduate degree in Clinical Social Work / Psychology + Graduate degree in Fine Arts / Intermedia = Psychologartistry }

I have served as a community organizer, licensed psychotherapist, and arts educator for a number of years, and my current research and practice merge the foundational tenets of social work and psychology with the core principles of fine arts. My work often assumes the form of an ongoing conversation and serves as an occasion to facilitate change and cultural growth. Such projects often seek to democratize art making, inviting unsuspecting and/or under-represented groups into traditionally “exclusive” environments and discourses, championing community engagement, entrepreneurship, active participation from marginalized voices, and continued inquiry into the cultures and institutions associated with the “creative class.” Irrespective of the utilized media, my steadfast objective remains to serve as an agent of positive change in my classroom and community.

The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fifth Edition (DSM-5) is the most recent update to the American Psychiatric Association's (APA) classification and diagnostic tool. In the United States, the DSM functions as a universally accepted instrument for psychiatric diagnosis. Treatment recommendations, and even health care provider reimbursements, are often determined by DSM classifications and coding. As a once licensed psychotherapist, I have come to simultaneously love and abhor this tool; the ease at which we can compartmentalize and label, marginalize or ignore, fix or abandon.

Throughout this site, specific projects have been classified according to the DSM diagnostic code and corresponding criteria and symptomatology. Given my continued search for health, growth, and positive change, I'm hopeful that the artwork contained herein may ultimately function as a newly tested treatment model, and an albeit "eccentric" but very successful case study and recommendation to ameliorate what ails so many of us in our communities.


Photo: Jasmine Anderson

© Peter Christenson, 2016. All rights reserved. The material on this site may not be reproduced, distributed, transmitted, cached or otherwise used, except with the prior written permission of Peter Christenson.