Painting with Refugees

Painting, sculpting, and self expression are methods of individual expression. As an art major at Texas Christian University, Olivia knows the importance of art in her life and wished to share it with others through her thesis project, so she decided to teach a painting class for Refugee Services of Texas clients in Fort Worth. Olivia wished to help others learn a new way to express themselves and to process how they feel about their new lives in the United States. After some painting demonstrations, Olivia encouraged the 10 attending clients to paint what is meaningful and important to them.

After seeing one client painting a house, Olivia asked them what they were painting and why. The client said, "I am painting what I am dreaming of - I dream of buying a house here [in the United States]. I want a stable life." The paintings the clients created ranged from images of their home countries, landscapes, homes, a car, and flowers.