Paint Release is an interactive form of art therapy that uses a canvas to capture trapped energies. Mental/emotional blocks are transferred from the psyche into a unique painting during a safe, comfortable one-on-one session where I mix/fling/chuck paint and shake/stomp/slap the canvas. Releasees keep the painting afterward as a symbol of what they freed.
An anonymous excerpt from the one-on-one for this release:
"Addiction runs in my family. My mom’s a pretty severe alcoholic. She’s brilliant. She’s my favorite person when she’s sober. My dad’s got his own issues. He went to prison when we were little. My twin sister started using heroin when we were 16. She died of an overdose a few years ago. We were 21 when she died.
I think about her every day but I don’t always attach to it. I’ve learned to compartmentalize it. It does still happen every once in awhile… I know this is so fucked up, but I’ll get images of her dead on the floor at her house, or the last conversation we had, or the last time I saw her and hugged her. It comes and goes.
She was sick. That’s what happens. It sucks. It’s weird.
I’ve struggled with my own anxiety and depression my whole life. I’ve done my drugs, but I was never an addict.
My mom and dad divorced when we were younger. She’s the nastiest drunk. My dad’s very pompous. He’s smart and he knows it. Seeing them together damaged my idea of relationships. I went for guys that were awful. My first boyfriend was a heroin addict. He’s actually the one who taught my sister how to use heroin.
We were 16 and at a party. We were both really fucked up. She was taking a lot of Xanax at the time. She passed out and was raped by someone we went to school with. After that… she lost it. She couldn’t sleep, she didn’t go to school, it was bad… and then I started dating this kid. I didn’t know he was a heroin addict. One night my sister said to him, “I know you’re withdrawing. I’ll buy you heroin if you teach us how to shoot up.” So he taught them how to shoot it up. That’s how it started and it never stopped.
I brought her to every rehab, every hospital, whatever I could do to help her. She wanted to die, she said. She said the only reason she didn’t kill herself was because of me.
I kept having the same dream before I came back from college for Christmas break. I saw my sister standing over an empty grave. I asked her, “what’s it like?” and she said, “just black.” A week later I was sick to my stomach, puking. Worst anxiety ever. I didn’t go out. The next day my dad called me and told me my sister didn’t make it."