Therapeutic touch : the use of photo-based methodology as a healing practice within the context of healthcare

Tsuchiya, Ikuko (2010) Therapeutic touch : the use of photo-based methodology as a healing practice within the context of healthcare. Doctoral thesis, Northumbria University.

PDF (PhD thesis)

Download (79MB) | Preview


This thesis describes the relationship between photography and healthcare in order to examine the model of practice generated by the concept of Photo Therapy, an approach developed by the celebrated British artist- photographer Jo Spence (1934-1992) who saw previously unexplored therapeutic dimensions to the act of taking photographic self-portraits (Spence, 1986). Spence sought visual ways of exploring her experiences as she negotiated treatments for her cancer. My aim has been to use this legacy to unders tand how an artist-photographer can be a kind of healer. My research, based on my own practices (which are very different from those of Spence) working as an artist-photographer on projects with the Camphill Village Trust and Northumbria Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust, has attempted to embrace the full range of social activities created by Photo Therapy: from the process of negotiating a shot; to hand printing the resulting photograph, to the discussions created by viewing photographs with patients, relatives and healthcare staff; to the remote reception of Photo Therapy images by exhibition-going audiences and readers of photographic publications. The context of my research project is the emergent character of Photo Therapy in Japan. My ambition has been to transfer the knowledge developed in the UK to my home country which still has some way to go before it can claim to possess a distinct arts and healthcare sector (Seki, Inoue and Miwaki, 2002). To achieve this goal I have adopted the terminology and methods of Transactional Analysis (TA), a form of psychotherapy that treats all social transactions as derivatives of a parent’s physical contact with its child, e.g. the healing ‘stroke’ of a mother’s hand (Berne, 1961). This form of therapy is familiar to many Japanese and, having applied TA concepts such as Ego States and Stroke Exchanges to my own transactions in healthcare contexts in the UK, I then sketch out my plans for using TA to promote Photo Therapy through my role as a founder member of the Japanese Photo -Therapists Network (JPTN), my country’s first group of photographers and doctors interested in practicing Photo Therapy.

Item Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Uncontrolled Keywords: Photographs-Therapeutics, Medical care
Subjects: B900 Others in Subjects allied to Medicine
W900 Others in Creative Arts and Design
Department: Faculties > Arts, Design and Social Sciences > Arts
University Services > Graduate School > Master of Philosophy
Related URLs:
Depositing User: EPrint Services
Date Deposited: 05 Jul 2010 12:54
Last Modified: 17 Dec 2023 11:33

Actions (login required)

View Item View Item


Downloads per month over past year

View more statistics