On February 22, 2014, the world witnessed the passing of renown Art Therapy pioneer and social realist painter, Edith Kramer. Kramer was born in Vienna on August 29th, 1916, some two decades before making her way to America as a political refugee in the mid to late 1930’s. Her early experience with art came as a result of studying with noted art teacher, Freidl Dickers, whose own work and philosophical views have been suggested to reflect aspects of art therapy, due to her work with children at Terezin. Some, however, speculate that this was an early influence that may have played a significant role in helping to shape Kramer’s later work. At age 18, Kramer followed Dickers to Prog, where she continued to study under Dickers for a time.
Video – Edith Kramer: Art Tells The Truth
Edith Kramer – Art Therapy Video
From 1973 to 2005, Kramer held a position as an Adjunct Professor of Art Therapy in the Graduate Art Therapy Program at New York University. In 1976, Kramer became the founder of the art therapy graduate program at the University. She was also the author of a number of influential papers and books in her field, such as her 1958 published work, “Art Therapy in a Children’s Community” and her 1971 publishing of “Art as Therapy with Children”. In 1996, Kramer received her honorary doctorate from Norwich University in Northfield, Vermont. She held a position, in Washington, D. C., as an Assistant Professor in the Graduate Art Therapy Program at The George Washington University . She also received the honorary Life Member award from The American Art Therapy Association. Finally, the painter and sculptor who was Edith Kramer returned to her home in Austria. It was there that she spent her remaining days before passing away at age 97. Those who knew her and loved her work shall surely miss her, even though her contribution to the world of art and art therapy lives on.