Charleston Heals Through Art

Hearts Mend Hearts Charleston SC

Charleston’s heart is broken. Residents are struggling to understand the senseless murders at Emanuel AME Church and deal with feelings of grief, fear, anger and helplessness.

For hundreds of years, the creative art process has helped people identify emotions, encourage communication and promote healing. Through the expertise of local art therapists, educators, mental health professionals and artists working with Charleston County Public Library, area residents can learn how to use art and the creative process to better understand and deal with grief related to the church shooting.

Free HEARTS MEND HEARTS sessions are Sundays 2:30 to 4pm until the end of December.

These structured workshops are designed to help individuals process their feelings and express their emotions in a safe environment through the creation of art. This schedule will continue through the end of September.  Beginning October 4th, sessions will be held on Sundays from 2:30-4pm in the Story Room at the Charleston County Public Library through the end of 2015.

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Professionals will lead attendees through the steps to create mandalas, which are considered “healing circles.” This internationally recognized method encourages individuals to tap into their creativity, identify personal emotions, reconcile conflicts and ultimately work toward healing.

art therapy workshop sampleTo the left is one of the images created at our workshop at the library.  It’s of a mother and daughter walking to church with dark clouds and rain. This is a metaphor of the heaviness, anxiety, and fear of walking to church that she talked about. She said the black words surrounded by red on the left were evil “don’t go” and “not safe anymore.” She decided to not let evil win and go to church anyway and labeled it “safe place” surrounded by blue sky and a yellow sun.

Area professionals who created Charleston Heals Through Art:
Dianne Tennyson Vincent, MAT, ATR, Registered Art Therapist
Laura De La Maza, Art Educator, National Board Certified Teacher

Special Thanks to:

Ben Capa, Fu Dog Media provided website design.


Beth McGrath from Wear It Out Mt. Pleasant has done a fantastic job on our T-shirts. We are so grateful for her help.


Craig Hollingshead of the Mount Pleasant Staples was very generous with his donation of 200 flyers.
Staples Mount Pleasant Donation

John Fitzpatrick from Adams Outdoor Advertising Sign Company for their generous donation of year of free billboards on Interstate 26.


Charleston County Library for their gifts of over 2,000 flyers and 1,000 fans with our logo. We would like to thank the Charleston County Public Library for allowing us to host the art sessions at the Main Branch on Calhoun St.

CCPL Hearts Mend Hearts Fan







Eric Vincent of Vincent Media Group for design and media services.


Attorney Michael Drose of Drose Law Firm for assisting us with non-profit status and legal advice.drose-logo-new

Mike and Libby Veeck of The Charleston Riverdogs.logo_riverdogs

Matt Dietz of Artist and Craftsman Supply for in-kind donations of art supplies.ac-supply-logo

Art Connects Us Art School and Art Therapy


Chuck Gee for live guitar music during sessions.

And, of course, our amazing volunteers: Leigh Ann Lichty, Diane Wilson, Iris Wilson, Gayle Woodward, Patty Maderson, Terry Monell, Joyce Thrower, Naomi Naumann, Susan Hendricks, Norva Andrews De Coteau, Nicole Dawson, Kathie Hermyer-Dawson, Maggie Poandl, Dean Ludington, Barbara Naderi, Helen Boyle, Sharon Martin, Caroline Ilderton, Phyllis Connor, Taylor Hollingsworth, BJ Ashby, Claire Law, Linda Fantuzzo, Eileen Shields, Tanner Tucker, Kathy Kaknes, Carolyn Lackey, Laura Howle, Tonisia Brown-Cotten, Chuck Gee, Melissa Borland, Desiree Frasier, Reece Long, and Gabrielle Drose.