When Walls Become Doorways: Creativity and the Transforming Illness by Tobi Zausner, PhD, LCSW

When Walls Become Doorways: Creativity and the Transforming Illness

byTobi Zausner, PhD, LCSW

Kobo ebook | April 27, 2016

Pricing and Purchase Info


Prices and offers may vary in store

Available for download

Not available in stores


You are stronger than you think you are and more creative than you ever imagined. 

Yet sometimes these strengths appear during a time of a weakness – when you are sick. Although illness may feel like an impassible barrier, it can be the doorway to a new and more creative existence. When this happens, an illness becomes a transforming illness and then life’s lowest moments can bring forth your greatest potential for creativity and growth. 

This book will show you ways to access your creative abilities and turn an experience of poor health into a new and better life. A transforming illness can happen to anyone at any age, from childhood to the later years and may even occur more than once.

A transforming illness altered the lives of Leonardo da Vinci, Frida Kahlo, Michelangelo, Rembrandt, Georgia O’Keeffe and many other artists. Illness shaped their work and their masterpieces changed our world. 

These individuals and the other artists in this book work with visual impairments, cancer, heart problems, deafness, quadriplegia, arthritis, kidney disease, learning disorders, neurological ailments, autism, AIDS, Down syndrome, and many other conditions. Rather than stopping the artists, these difficulties challenge them, inspiring both the artist and the art. 

Creativity is a basic human capacity extending across all racial and cultural boundaries. In their diversity and their determination, the artists in this book show that the transforming illness is fundamental to humanity. What they have done during illness – and continue to do – is possible and available for everyone.

When the author Tobi Zausner was diagnosed with ovarian cancer in 1989, her doctor didn’t think she would last the year, but her life transformed – the wall of illness became a door of opportunity. Using fascinating and true stories of artists and drawing upon her own experience, Dr. Zausner offers methods for accessing your creative abilities. You too can turn a time of poor health into creative achievement and a more meaningful new life.

About the Author
Tobi Zausner is a research psychologist, a psychotherapist in private practice, and an award-winning visual artist with works in major museums and in private collections around the world. Dr. Zausner, who teaches at Saybrook University, publishes and lectures on the psychology of art and human potential. She is an officer on the Board of A.C.T.S (Arts, Crafts, and Theatre Safety), a non-profit organization investigating health hazards in the arts and her book, When Walls Become Doorways: Creativity and the Transforming Illness, highlights the influence of physical illness on the creative process of visual artists. A native New Yorker and an avid reader and walker, Dr. Zausner wishes there were more trees, grass, and hills in New York City. 

Title:When Walls Become Doorways: Creativity and the Transforming IllnessFormat:Kobo ebookPublished:April 27, 2016Publisher:Tobi Zausner, PhD, LCSWLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title: