The European Graduate School
EST. 1994

Arts, Health and Society Division

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2015. Dr. Paolo Knill on Arts

Dr. Paolo Knill talks about why and how arts are important. How does Expressive Arts Therapy help?

I want to answer this question by considering Art as an acclivity of human beings, as one of their existentials. And existential means “how can I imagine a human being without it?” I cannot imagine a human being without food, without shelter, without protection. And I cannot imagine it without the arts. So there is a healthy way to live with eating, live with the fact that we need protection, and to live with the fact that we need to have a life that allows humanity to go on. Now art is interesting, because one could think “oh we could live without it”, however humanity never lived without it in a healthy way. Most are regulated with rituals: the rituals of healing, the rituals of social change, and individual change in the world, like marriage, or becoming an adult. And in all these rituals you can see art: music, poetry, story telling, and so forth. So, in that sense there is a healthy way to go on with the arts. If the arts are misused, as being propaganda, or for selling something, then it is not used in the right way, however, we are not making a law of forbidding it. We just say, that art should have its own way of manifesting itself. It’s kind of a healthy companion. If I can bring in my story and share it with other people through poetry, then I feel better being understood by people. If I am able to sing, or make a song, together with somebody else, or in groups, then it is a wonderful ritual of being in an ensemble, in teamwork. And if you are able to make a theatre play that shows situations in life that touch us, and give a sense of empathy with certain life situations, we feel understood as people. And it is less likely that people stay alone with their suffering, and that they have nothing else than to talk about it and not having someone there to share it with. So it is a way of taking care of health, and it is not only to take care of the existentials like health, like eating, like sheltering, also like sharing the story of life and giving each other support.

2017. Chasing Inspiration. A film about Inspiration and the Expressive Arts

Lucia Cardenas, an AHS alumnus, made this beautiful film as part of her MA Thesis at the Division of Arts, Health and Society at EGS. It features AHS students and faculty speaking about inspiration and the expressive arts.

2017. Vignettes from summer school 2017

2017. Anna Fenech. Still images

2016. Paolo J. Knill. On the notion of -the third-.

Paolo J. Knill Ph.D. & Dr. h.c., founding President and Professor at the AHS (Arts, Health and Society) Division from The European Graduate School / EGS. Saas Fee, Switzerland 2016.

2016. Margo Fuchs Knill. Poetry and the Expressive Arts.

Margo Fuchs Knill, Dean of the Masters Program and Professor at the AHS (Arts, Health and Society) Division from The European Graduate School / EGS. Saas Fee, Switzerland 2016.

2016. Carrie MacLeod. What is unlikely and Unique about E.G.S?

Carrie MacLeod Ph.D. candidate, Professor at the AHS (Arts, Health and Society) Division from The European Graduate School / EGS. Saas Fee, Switzerland 2016.

2016. Michael Siegell. A Way Of Knowing.

We have asked EGS adjunct faculty member Michael Siegell what has brought him to work with Expressive Arts and if he sees a connection between Rumi (Jalāl ad-Dīn Muḥammad Balkhī) and the work we do.

2016. Melinda Ashley Meyer. This School Is A Laboratory For Peace.

We have asked EGS Core Faculty Member Melinda Ashley Meyer what kind of unbeatable contribution Expressive Arts offers for the work with refugees.

2016. Brigitte Wanzenried. The Two Things That Make Me Whole.

EGS faculty member Brigitte Wanzenried about the connection between her life as an artist and her life as art therapist.

2016. Kelly Clark Keefe. Commitment and Integrity.

We have asked Kelly Clark Keefe who was teaching the first time at EGS: What’s your first impression?

2016. Barbara Hielscher-Witte. Everything Has Found It’s Right Place.

We asked Barbara Hielscher-Witte, EGS faculty member, how Expressive Arts have enriched her live.

2016. Sally Atkins. We make Art to ask Questions and find Surprises.

We have asked EGS core faculty member Professor Sally Atkins: „Over all these years you are such a successful teacher. The student evaluations from your seminars are always off the charts. What’s your magic, what’s your secret?“

2016. Markus Alexander. It’s actually peace.

We asked senior faculty member Markus Alexander what makes him come back to EGS in Saas-Fee with passion every summer since twenty years.

2015. Testimonials by students

The following testimonials were gathered during the Summer School sessions of 2015.

2014. Being with the Arts is our Way of Being in the World

See some sequences of the Summer School 2014, ranging from lectures to performances, art-making and community-art.

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