Prof Diane Waller OBE
MA(RCA) ATC DPhil Dip Psych FRSA
Principal Research Fellow
Applied Social Science
Emeritus Professor of Art Psychotherapy, Goldsmiths, University of London
Hon Visiting Professor and Chair of the International Centre for Research in the Arts Therapies, Imperial College, London
Art Psychotherapist registered with the Health Professions Council
Group Analytic Psychotherapist registered with the UKCP
Hon President British Association of Art Therapists
Vice-President International Society for the Study of the Psychopathology of Expression, Toulouse
Council member Section Art and Psychiatry, World Psychiatric Association
Council member Health Professions Council, UK
Graduated from Ruskin School of Fine Art, Oxford and Royal College of Art before becoming involved in art therapy in the 1970s and doing group psychotherapy training in the 1980s and DPhil at the University of Sussex (1990). Was responsible for establishing first art psychotherapy and psychotherapy postgraduate training in the University of London; and for the first MA in Group and Intercultural Therapy at Goldsmiths. Led on the petition for statutory regulation of the arts therapies (1990-1997) and was first Chair of the Arts Therapists Board (1998). Worked extensively in Bulgaria (WHO) and former Yugoslavia in the 1980s, and in Italy, Holland, Germany and Switzerland helping to establish training and services in art therapy and new psychosocial interventions. Continues to be involved in research and development through the International Centre at Imperial College and the European Consortium of Arts Therapy Educators and in partnership with several UK universities and NHS trusts.
Represented the Health Professions Council on steering groups for Increasing Access for Psychological Therapies (Dept of Health) Skills for Health, New Ways of Working, and Chaired the Professional Liaison Group at HPC looking at the possible regulation of psychotherapy and counselling (2008-11)
Awarded OBE for Services to Health in 2007
Awarded the Professor Volmat Medal for International Contribution to Art Therapy in 2006.
Supervising research students: University of Brighton, Regent's College, Goldsmiths
- Sociology of health professions, especially art therapy and psychotherapy
- Evidence based practice in the arts therapies: includes eating disorders, psychosis, dementia, stroke, progressive illness, psychological services for older people
- Intercultural issues in psychological therapies
- Ethnography of the Balkans, particularly textiles and costume
Current and recent research projects
A 3 phase project to evaluate the use of art therapy groups for older people with dementia (1996-2005) including an RCT and qualitative study, funded by the Health Foundation, with Prof J. Rusted and Dr L. Sheppard, University of Sussex.
A Multi-Centre Randomised control trial to evaluate the use of art therapy with people with schizophrenia living in the community – MATISSE (2006-2011) funded by Health Technology Assessment, with Prof M.Crawford (Imperial) and Dr H. Killaspy (UCL)
The Experience of Parkinsons: Words and Images through Art Therapy. A qualitative study of individual art therapy for people with Parkinson’s (2007-2010) with S. Strand, funded through RAE support grant, Goldsmiths.
Pilot study to explore the use of dance with people with moderate dementia (2010-11) with N. Smith, funded by CUPP Brighton.
Pilot study to explore the use of art therapy groups for people in Stroke Rehabilitation: a mixed methods trial funded by the Age Research Centre (BSMS) with Dr K. Ali (2012-) Awaiting outcome of proposal for longer term project.
Evaluating carer support programmes delivered by the Alzheimer’s Society (2012-) with M. Barnes, F. Henwood and N. Smith (SASS)
Awaiting outcome: Project to explore impact of viewing art and art therapy groups at two local art galleries on older people with dementia and their carers, with J. Rusted (Sussex) and J. Stevens (NHS Partnership Trust) 2012
A systematic review of the literature on art therapy for people with non-psychotic mental illness (HTA call) with D.M. Walker, University of Nottingham, M. Crawford (Imperial) and H. Killaspy (UCL) 2012
Numerous books, chapters and papers concerning above research interests. Books focussed on research for patient benefit include: Group Interactive Art Therapy: Its Use in Training and Treatment (1996) The Treatment of Addiction (1999) Arts Therapies and Progressive Illness (2002) Art Therapy and Cancer Care (2005); and on history and sociology: The History of Art Therapy in Britain 1940-1982 (1991) and Towards a European Art Therapy (1998) and 3 volumes Arts-Therapies-Communication focussed on European and International contributions (2001, 2003, 2005). Books in preparation include studies of end of life experiences (Beyond Content: What is missing?) and an edited work on art therapy and neurological illness. For full list of publications and any other information please contact Professor Waller direct.