Co-Founder & Chairperson
Oihika Chakrabarti, (MFA, RATh, DAT-c), Art Psychotherapist, Art Therapy Educator & Community Arts Practitioner has over two decades of clinical, developmental, rehabilitative, trauma-management, post-disaster/humanitarian, training, teaching and supervising experience, working in India and abroad. Oihika has a Masters in Fine Arts from Visva Bharati University, Santiniketan, India. In 1997, she was awarded the Commonwealth Scholarship by the Govt. of India to pursue post-graduate training in Art Psychotherapy at Goldsmiths College, University of London, UK. On her return, she pioneered Art Therapy in India, spearheading the first Art Psychotherapy clinical service at the Tata Institute of Social Sciences's Child Guidance Clinic at Wadia Children’s Hospital, Mumbai in 1999. In 2004 she founded the non-profit Manahkshetra Foundation (art for social change) to expand the scope of the field. Oihika is the core faculty of Art Therapy on the PGDip ExAT programme at St. Xavier's College, Mumbai and is completing her Professional Doctorate in Art Therapy from Mount Mary University, USA. Oihika’s doctoral research on decolonizing the curriculum aims to contribute to the co-creation of the first culturally relevant Masters in Creative Arts Therapy in India. She is a global ambassador of the European Consortium of Arts Therapies Education (ECArTE) in India, a peer reviewer of Goldsmiths journal, Art Therapy Online and an Advisor to the International Association of Creative Arts in Education and Therapy (IACAET) and has contributed to several art/s therapy publications worldwide.
Co-Founder & Secretary
Disha is a Bangalore based artist and art therapist with a Master’s Degree in Art Therapy from Lasalle College of the Arts, Singapore. She is involved with the Red Pencil International, an art therapy organisation based out of Singapore and has been on art therapy missions with them to Nepal and Delhi. The work done here involved art therapy with children from underprivileged backgrounds.She has also facilitated several workshops with various organisations in Bangalore. Shehasworked as an Art Therapist at The School at Winds O’ Change a school for differently abled children in Bangalore. In the last six years, Disha has worked extensively with children and adults who are differently abled and facilitated art therapy support groups with children and adults in slum areas who have faced abuse and trauma. She has also conducted art therapy support groups, workshops and one on one art therapy sessions with typical adults who need interventions to support them with their overall mental health. Disha is passionate about what she does and is always striving to find creative ways to help individuals express themselves through art.
Co-Founder & Treasurer
Born and raised in Chennai, Tamil Nadu, Sruthi is a licensed art therapist who began her career in 2014 with disaster relief operations and humanitarian art therapy missions in APAC regions and the Middle East, up till 2018. These included the Philippines, Myanmar, Nepal, Thailand, Lebanon, Kurdistan and India; and targeted survivors affected by the aftermath of war, conflict and natural disasters. Sruthi returned to build her own practice in India since, and her work largely focuses on community welfare and health initiatives in collaboration with grassroots organisations and government supported initiatives to deliver short-term and long-term art therapy. She extended her services as a mental health practitioner and collaborated with the Indian Council of Child Welfare, Tamil Nadu (ICCWTN) to promote Foster Care and build awareness about the POSCO (Protection of Children from Sexual Offences) Act. She is currently conducting an Art Therapy residency at the International Foundation of Crime Prevention and Victim Care (PCVC), designed to rehabilitate women, children, families and LGBTQI survivors of domestic violence and burns. She also assumes the role of a part-time supervisor in the MA Art Therapy program at Lasalle College of the Arts. Trained in Bharatanatyam for 10 years, Sruthi is keen to learn more about the mind-body paradigm and has explored these avenues by engaging in contemporary movement projects with eminent choreographers and artists globally to deliver performances in India, UK and Reunion Islands.
Krupa Jhaveri, EXAT CAGS, PhD-candidate, is an International Expressive Arts Therapist, Art Director, Artist, Teacher and Founder of Sankalpa: Art Journeys based near Auroville, south India. Born in Colorado and of Gujarati ethnic origin, she is a living bridge between cultures through art. Krupa specializes in trauma-informed expressive arts therapy, in combining sacred art & yoga/mindfulness, and adapting nature-based, indigenous and traditional crafts such as kolam and henna. She published a chapter within Craft in Art Therapy (Routledge 2020) and is an Ambassador to India for Art Therapy Without Borders During the pandemic, Sankalpa launched handmade art kits supporting local artisans and promoting creativity for education, growth and healing around the world. An accompanying Integral Expressive Arts Therapy Training (IEXATT) is central to her arts-based PhD research at the European Graduate School. She is a TEDx Women speaker and an art therapy gypsy throughout Asia, America and Europe (now mainly online)! Sankalpajourneys.com
Dr. Saoni Banerjee
Dr. Saoni Banerjee, is an art-psychotherapist practicing in Kolkata since 2013. She completed her Masters degree in Psychology from University of Calcutta and Masters in Creative Arts Therapies from University of Haifa. She worked with a cross-national population of adolescents under poverty for her doctorate degree program from School of Social Sciences, University of Haifa. With over a decade of experience in the field of mental health care, she believes in using her expertise to contribute towards community welfare, beyond individual level benefits. She has been invited by organizations nationally and internationally to conduct art therapy workshops and webinars with students, trauma victims and train mental health professionals. Presently she is an assistant professor at the department of psychology, Loreto College, Kolkata and a guest lecturer in West Bengal State University. Identifying herself as an experientialist, Saoni uses eclectic approach in therapy and takes deep interest in mindfulness meditation.
Arjun Lakshmipathi identifies himself as a creative being with a purpose to foster love and healing in his living environment. He believes that we all are creative beings shaping our own sense of reality. Arjun approaches therapy with an Adlerian perspective and his goal is to help clients reevaluate and rediscover themselves through creative expression. After his undergraduate degree in Fine Arts from Chitrakala Parishath, Arjun worked in the field of Art Education and Fashion. Later he pursued graduate studies in Art Therapy and got his Masters from the Adler University in 2006, and moved back to Bangalore in 2014. Since his graduation he has been working with the oppressed and the marginalised. Individuals with various mental disorders, depressive disorder, anxiety, adjustment disorder, LGBTQIA+ community, people with traumatic brain injuries, ADHD/ADD, as well as with people with various forms of trauma experienced throughout a lifespan. He has been providing holistic therapy with an open dialogue model of intervention which involves clients and their support system.
Charithra K Ballal
Charithra K Ballal works as a Psychologist at Manipal Hospital, Bangalore. She's also a visual artist working towards an inclusive approach towards mental health and emotional well-being in the health care sector with hospitals, schools and organizations. Her work is informed by her training in Art-Psychotherapy (Goldsmith's College, University of London, UK) which is in process, Systemic Family Constellations (Ochre, Ireland & Spanda, Bangalore) and yoga (S-Vyasa University Bangalore). For more than a decade now she's worked with gender and sexuality, grief and grieving, behavior related issues with children and adults. She's currently working on setting up departments and structures to support the patient's and their primary care-givers in the critical care units at the hospital in various departments and runs her own private practice. Her artworks and photographs have been exhibited at different galleries across the globe.
Latika Joshi, well versed art therapist and mental health counsellor with almost a decade of experience working with students who have diverse needs. Knowledgeable in using creative processes and interventions, behavioural monitoring with children and delivering appropriate therapies. In addition to intensive exposure in elderly care and early intervention centres as an art therapist intern, her work experience has had a major contribution to schools. She hasI worked in premiere schools of India and is currently based in Tanzania. She is a certified cognitive-behavioural therapist and holds a Masters in creative art therapy. She was integrating art in therapy from the beginning of her career as a counsellor and decided to learn more about this mode of therapy. In 2015 she went to the University of Haifa, Israel to pursue an MA in creative arts therapy. Currently, she is working for all the schools under Aga khan education services in Tanzania. She has a compassionate, understanding, and friendly demeanour when working with children in any situation. Her career path helped me to learn about various cultures and religions. Being receptive to changes and differences have helped her more than any educational qualifications.
Nandini Yadalam is a practicing Transpersonal Arts Counsellor with a private practice in Jayanagar, Bengaluru (since December 2018). She has a Masters Degree in Transpersonal Arts in Therapy from Tobias School of Art and Therapy, UK. After 8 years in the IT space, she chose to pursue Art Therapy in 2015 and after 3 years of training she was convinced that this was what she wanted to do with her life. It was both exciting and terrifying to start again! While she was passionate about individual therapy, she also had experience conducting group and corporate workshops. She works with adults, children and the elderly. She has worked with trauma, depression and anxiety, special needs, attention deficit disorder, bereavement, terminal illnesses & psychosomatic illnesses. She has also given a few talks in corporate spaces and schools in Bengaluru to raise awareness about art therapy and reduce the stigma of therapy.
Roshini Bhatia, a multidisciplinary artist and art therapist from Bangalore, Roshni works with children, young people, and is involved in several arts-based community interventions. Trained with an MA in Art Therapy from Lasalle College of the Arts Singapore and a BA in Creative Arts in Contemporary Art Practices from Srishti school of art, design and technology, Roshni has worked with children and young women with histories of complex trauma in sensitive settings in Singapore. She is the Co-founder of FoundSpace, a collective for cross-cultural and multidisciplinary collaboration of the arts and mental wellness. Roshni has presented her research on Embodiment, trauma, and new-media arts at the ANZACATA Conference in Australia, and has exhibited at the IASD Dream Conference in the Netherlands in 2019. She is committed to expanding the boundaries of therapeutic spaces and making ethical art therapy practices more accessible.
Mahesh Iyer is a registered Art Therapist closely working with children, youth and young adults in Singapore. He is currently providing services as a Programme Executive/ Art Therapist at Singapore Association for Mental Health (SAMH). Prior to this, Mahesh provided art therapy services for children and youth in the special needs community, with an emphasis on Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). Before graduation, Mahesh completed his clinical placement working closely with older adults at a sheltered home where he developed a process to integrate indigenous & traditional art forms within his practice. This work later contributed to art therapy literature and has been presented at several international art therapy conferences.
Neha Bhat specializes in feminist oriented, trauma-informed art therapy and counseling between India and the U.S. She employs trauma-focused therapy for survivors of sexual violence, offers crisis-counseling, and uses art as a radical tool of living and coping against systems of oppression. Her work as an interdisciplinary artist informs her professional counseling practice, enabling her to bring into the clinical setting elements of play through visual art, theatre, and movement in the clinical setting.
Hasika Suresh is an artist, licensed art psychotherapist (HCPC & BAAT U.K.) and a Graduate Member of the British Psychological Society (BPS). Over the last four years, she has practiced within the realms of creative arts, psychoeducation, mainstream mental healthcare and more recently, art psychotherapy, with a wide range of client groups in India, England and Wales. Having worked within various multicultural settings, she is a firm believer of diversified, specialised, compassion-focused care that highlights the unique strengths and needs of each service user. Furthermore, she aims to help others develop a more integrated or holistic understanding of mental health, by exploring the interconnectedness between the physical, psychological and spiritual aspects of well-being. Hasika’s interests largely revolve around conservation, sustainability, indigenous ways of life, Yoga, Reiki and holistic health. Given her love for natural spaces and conscious ways of living, Hasika is currently exploring the use of environmental art therapy, the ‘portable therapeutic frame’ and the metaphorical significance of natural materials, dyes & pigments in her own reflective practice.
Sharmeen Kaur Khurana
Sharmeen Kaur Khurana is an Art Psychotherapist certified by British Association of Art Therapy (BAAT) and UNESCO- Conseil International de la Danse and a registered member of the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC, United Kingdom). Currently running her own practice in New Delhi, she is catering to clients of all ages and sociocultural backgrounds. Her experience ranges from a Psychiatric Hospital to schools and NGOs. She has experience working with therapeutic groups in an open studio approach in varied settings of art museums, schools and refugee charity. During the ongoing pandemic, she has conducted therapeutic art sessions on social media platforms and done numerous art therapy workshops with a range of NGOs and corporates. Her passion lies in bringing art as a way of expression and communication in our everyday life. She hopes to continue this journey and provide a safe space to explore our emotions through art.
Meghna Girish is a qualified and trained Art Therapist and an Artrepreneur based in Kochi, Kerala. She did her MA in Creative Arts Therapies with a specialization in Art Therapy from the University of Haifa, Israel and holds a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology. Her work and experience revolve around children and women ( trauma and abuse ). She has worked with a Mumbai-based NGO, which fights against human trafficking. She does consultation practice using art therapy protocols at different shelter homes across India. Along with private practice, she uses her social media pages to promote her art & also to spread awareness of Art Therapy through workshops. She also conducts workshops, sessions and seminars on Art Therapy at colleges and schools.
Sanjoli Sakhuja has completed her BA(Hons) Psychology from LSR and MA in Applied Psychology from Delhi University, South campus. She has also completed her Master's in Art Psychotherapy from Goldsmiths College, University of London in 2020. Her experience includes working with children, adolescents, adults, families, and workshops in a variety of areas. This includes resilience building, positive thinking, self-awareness, self-esteem, social skills training, creativity, and imagination. She helps individuals manage stress and anxiety and difficult emotions like anger, aggression (physical and verbal), and rage. Her goal is to help the individual work towards overall well-being. She is passionate about building and spreading awareness of art psychotherapy in India.