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Great Lakes Mall To Host 'Expressions of Recovery' Art Show

Artists in the show have serious brain disorders -- like bipolar disorder or clinical depression -- or an addiction

will host a special art show this May in the Dillard's south concourse.

Most of the artwork was made during art therapy groups and all of the artists have a serious brain disorder -- schizophrenia, bipolar disorder or clinical depression, for instance – or have struggled with addiction.

The show is called Expressions of Recovery and it is in its 21st year. The Lake County Alcohol, Drug Addiction and Mental Health Services Board sponsors it.

Heidi Sliter is an art therapist with Crossroads, an agency in the ADAMHS network that focuses on children, adolescents and families. She says the Expressions of Recovery show offers a unique perspective on the nature of brain disorders.

"Art therapy can be an important part of someone’s recovery on a number of different levels," Sliter said.

"Many use their art to express their feelings about their illness, or make their illness more tangible. For others, the creative process itself provides some very therapeutic relief from the symptoms of the illness. So some of the pieces in this exhibit are fun or silly, some are touching, some even a bit disquieting. But collectively, this is a body of work that will definitely open people’s eyes."

Lake County ADAMHS Executive Director Kim Fraser said she’s proud of the twenty-one year history of the show.

"This is an important event in our system and the fact that it has now been around for more than two decades speaks to how successful it has become," she said.

"We hold this show in May to coincide with Mental Health Month. It’s an appropriate time to celebrate the benefits of art therapy, and to remind people of the important work that happens every day within our network of service providers."

The show is free and open to the public. It kicks off with an artists' reception from 5 to 6:30 p.m. Monday.

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