Carl R. Darnall AMC holds art show for Soldiers, spouses struggling with combat, injury
October 4, 2012
FORT HOOD, Texas -- Carl R. Darnall Army Medical Center sponsored the second annual Soldier Art Show at the Oveta Culp Hobby Center here Sept. 24-28.
The theme of the show this year was "Unspoken: Overcoming Struggles of Combat Through Art."
"The original intent was inspired by of one of our counselors with a Soldier who would bring in personal artwork and talk about how she used it to work through difficult times," said Stacy Nelson, CRDAMC Department of Social Work supervisor. "So we figured there had to be more people out there who do the same thing."
Because the first art show was so successful, it was brought back again for a second year, said Nelson.
In fact this year the show was not only open to current and past military members, but to spouses as well, Nelson explained.
"The split in submissions between service members and spouses is about fifty-fifty," Nelson stated.
For one military spouse, Maria Seiber, dealing with her diagnosis of ovarian cancer while her husband was deployed to Iraq in 2011 pushed her to express her feelings on a canvas.
"I was alone, and since I had been painting since I was born, it was a good way for me to deal with the stress," Seiber said.
Seiber, who had six paintings in the show, entered her artwork as a way to show how she dealt with her pain to help others who may be going through similar stress, she explained.
"We all feel pain, but sometimes focusing on something like art can ease the pain and give us peace of mind," said Seiber.
While artwork such as painting works for some, it is not the only method of stress relief creative Soldiers can use.
Because writing poetry helped her deal with the stress of being a wounded warrior, Spc. Melissa Greene, Warrior Transition Battalion, felt that displaying her poetry may help other Soldiers deal with stress in their own lives.
"I submitted my work to let others see my poetry, because the stress of injury does not only affect me, but other Soldiers as well," said Greene.
While holding an art show may be a unique way to help Soldiers through stressful times, Col. Patrick D. Sargent, CRDAMC commander, is dedicated to helping recovering Soldiers in any way he can.
"This event shows that we are trying to reach people in every medium possible," said Sargent.
Sargent went on to explain that the Social Work Department and the Department of Mental Health are trying to find new ways to help Soldiers, so that no Soldier is left without the treatment they need.
"The Army's mission is to never leave a fallen comrade," said Sargent.