International Journal of Art & Design Education

The Use of Projective Drawings to Determine Visual Themes in Young Kuwaiti Women Impacted by the Iraqi Invasion

Volume 27.1   2008



This study is part of a larger qualitative research project which examines visual imagery created through projective art tasks undertaken by young Kuwaiti women who were resident in Kuwait during the 1990 Saddam-Hussein-led Iraqi invasion of their country. The purpose of this article is to present evidence from the study as it is evolving. This study uses projective drawing tasks to elicit and examine the mental schema (i.e. colours, images and symbols [CIS]) of women between the ages of 20 and 22, who lived in Kuwait during the invasion. Piaget's model of the preoperational stage of childhood development is referred to when connecting nonverbal cognitive structures associated with the projective drawing tasks. The focus of this study was to determine if CIS themes could be generated through projective drawing tasks by individuals who had experienced a similar traumatic event. Visual data collected during research sessions bore this out. While thematic CIS did occur, further interpretation of the visual data was not a goal of the study.