Angela Lyonsmith is a mother, artist, art therapist and educator. She is an experienced practitioner who provides clinical supervision for innovative art therapy practice throughout the Midwest, has taught in the graduate art therapy departments at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and Mount Mary University for over a decade, and is a co-director of Kids Create Change. She is a founding board member for Evanston Made and serves on the advisory board to the Visibility Arts Program, Refettorio Chicago and the DuPage Children’s Museum’s Frontline Partners. Angela is a founding member of a cross cultural team supporting the development of therapeutic arts trainings in East Africa through Global Alliance for Africa, served as an administrator and program director in craft-based social enterprises in Chicago and volunteers with local organizations to provide additional support to families in the realms of literacy, access to arts enrichment and play. She was honored to be the Artist-in Residence at the DuPage Children’s Museum in the spring of 2020. She operated the first community art studio and creativity focused play space for young children, Gather, which opened in 2013 in downtown Evanston. Angela is currently a Doctoral Candidate at Mount Mary University conducting an international study of life enhancing space in art therapy. She earned a BS in Neuroscience and Art from Muskingum University, a Masters Degree in Art Therapy from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, and is a registered art therapist and a licensed clinical professional counselor.
Her art practice is an extension of her community work and slow craft activism. She engages families and community members in collaborative art making with the goal of promoting wellbeing, encouraging resilience and extending community care. This is illustrated in the art and community engagement of initiatives like: the Wandering Uterus Project, Community Peace Project, Access Art, Art Connects Us, Community Care Circle Project, 2020 Year of Kindness and Nonviolent Action and the Connections Residency. Her personal art making explores many media, but tends to land in the realms of bricolage and fiber art. Angela is drawn to making things with what is left behind, sewing and assembling salvaged bits and pieces to explore her role as a parent, educator and citizen. @artwithpeople