An International Network of Mentally Challenged Artists

A 501 (c)(3) Organization


Altered States of the Arts is a nationwide network of creative people who are current or former recipients of psychiatric services.  Our purpose is to promote the arts as a vehicle for social change, personal empowerment, healing and recovery.  See The Power of Arts to Heal” a collection of quotations  on the value of art among consumers/survivors/ex-consumers and the correlation with healing and recovery.  We promote artists, writers and performers throughout the country whose art contains a “message” about their mental health issues that can provide insight and understanding to a wide audience of persons receiving services, mental health providers and the public at large.  By art, we always mean storytelling, poetry, music, dance, visual arts, painting, sculpture, everything that is usually thought of as creativity.

Our Goals:


· To maintain the Altered States Website that provides news and updates of arts opportunities throughout the country, a rotating exhibit of visual art and writings, and a database of consumer web sites and arts programs and resources throughout the country


· To promote performances and activities at conferences, festivals and rallies


· To provide technical assistance to state institutions, hospital facilities and consumer providers on ways to use art as a meaningful healing tool


· To create a network for artists with a wide variety of psychiatric disabilities  including trauma survivors and others in an effort to support recovery and eliminate discrimination.


· To promote the arts as part of policy making and leadership potential


· Assisting Peer Support Specialists to use art in their support responsibilities.


· To present the “Howie the Harp Arts Award” annually at the Alternatives Conference, to the person who best exemplifies the spirit as an artist with vision toward recovery and  social change.  See this year’s recipient Amy Smith here!



Text Box: We continue to receive requests for copies of the manual “Reaching Across with the Arts”.  It is available through this website for you to Browse or download by clicking  here.