‘The Masks We Wear: Healing Through Art’ displays masks and volumes of artwork created by youth and their families working through the Pine River Institute addiction recovery program.

At Pine River Institute, we encourage involvement in the arts for all our students and understand the significant positive impact that this has on their mental health. Self expression and self reflection, art in all its forms, are key therapeutic activities at Pine River.

Visitors will learn about the mask-making process and how it impacts the students and their families.


Exhibition: Runs from May 1st – June 30th (Wednesday to Sunday)
Location: Press Room Gallery in Collingwood, 65 Simcoe Street
Celebration and Tour: Friday, May 24, 7:00pm; All Welcome

The art program at Pine River is funded entirely through individual donations.
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The Exhibition

‘The Masks We Wear’ is a two-month-long art exhibition showcasing a variety of visual works created by Pine River youth, parents, and alumni.

The masks are created at an advanced stage of the student’s healing journey, called the Maturity Model. Parents and caregivers of students at Pine River also create masks as part of their therapeutic work in what is known as the Parallel Process for families.

At the exhibition, guided tours and self-tours will be available. Visitors will learn about the mask-making process, how it inspires the students and their families, and the many therapeutic benefits of hand made art.

Please join us on Friday, May 24 at 7:00pm for a Celebration & Tour of the masks and artwork. Ann Clifford will lead us through a 10-year art retrospective, full of emotional impact. An inspiring video and presentations by Ann and Vaughan Dowie, CEO of Pine River will follow. Refreshments will be served and guests will be invited to support Pine River’s art program.

Ann Clifford

Ann Clifford is the Visual Arts Facilitator at Pine River, an Award-Winning Sculptor and a celebrated Community Arts Practitioner.

Ann’s experiential art sessions offer psycho education through art making. The Art Cabin at PRI provides a safe space for students to build relationships, as well as explore and confront the complex emotions underlying their struggles.

The Stage 3 Self Awareness Mask Project has proven to be an invaluable tool in supporting youth with addiction and mental health issues on their path to well-being and developing healthier coping mechanisms. Artistic activities encouraging self expression have had profound therapeutic benefits for our students.

As a veteran youth worker Ann has decades of cross disciplinary experience in youth advocacy, community mental health and expressive arts education. More information @anncliffordart

About Pine River

Pine River Institute (PRI) helps adolescents struggling with addictive behaviours and other mental health issues to reclaim their lives, their families, and their futures.

Pine River Institute is the only program of its kind in Canada – a live-in treatment centre and outdoor leadership experience for youth, ages 13 to 19. Located near Shelburne, Ontario, PRI combines therapy with a fully-accredited education program to reinforce the healthy life skills required for a successful future. Pine River also provides outreach, education and training to parents, schools and clinicians on youth addiction and mental health.