BEHIND THE MASK
Sculptural masks created by Iraq and Afghanistan war veterans hang in the Southwestern University art gallery, where they are featured in the Combat Arts exhibit, Sept. 14, 2013.
Sculptural masks created by Iraq and Afghanistan war veterans hang in the Southwestern University art gallery, where they are featured in the Combat Arts exhibit, Sept. 14, 2013.
Photo by Sgt. Ken Scar

Trauma Of War And The Mask That Follows

Posted on
T&P on Facebook

Service members who have suffered traumatic brain injuries during deployments to Iraq and Afghanistan have found a cathartic release in art therapy, led by therapist Melissa Walker at the National Intrepid Center of Excellence, at Walter Reed Hospital, Bethesda, Maryland. The therapy involves painting masks that reflect the trauma underneath.

“I had this muzzle on with all these wounds and I couldn’t tell anybody about them,” said Marine Cpl. Chris McNair, a participant in the project. “I think this is what started me kind of opening up and talking about stuff and actually trying to get better.”

Get the full story at National Geographic.