Culture

Psychotherapist finds humor in darkness by writing hilarious self-help book covers. 

by Tod Perry

December 11, 2018

Psychotherapists live their entire professional lives confronting neurosis, anxiety, and past trauma. It has to be hard not to get depressed when you’re on the receiving end of other people’s problems on a daily basis.

But psychotherapist, artist, and author Johan Deckmann has no problem finding the humor in the dark side of humanity. “Humour is a pretty convenient companion, given humankind’s condition,” he told The Guardian. “I think gratitude, appreciation of being here and a portion of self-irony are the main keys to a happy life.”

The Copenhagen-based artist has combined his love for psychotherapy and creativity into a series of fictional self-help book covers that expose the secret thoughts and feelings that most people have but never communicate.

His humorous, albeit dark, book titles are printed on repurposed, vintage books from what appears to be the ‘60s and ‘70s.

Much like his interactions as a psychotherapist, Deckmann’s work is a dialogue between the artist and audience. 

 

I want my works to be like mirrors,” he told Open Path Psychotherapy Collective. “When you look at them you might not like what you see but like a mirror, you now get the awareness and the chance to change something.”

“People often respond That’s me! That’s what I do to myself! Why do I do that? I think that’s a kind of medicine in a gallery,” he continued. “I think that making art helps me to be more defined as a psychotherapist. In one way, I distill my thoughts in my works and it makes me very sure of my view on things.”

Here are some examples of Deckmann’s hilarious and challenging work. You can find more on Instagram.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

A post shared by Johan Deckmann (@johandeckmann) on

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

A post shared by Johan Deckmann (@johandeckmann) on

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

A post shared by Johan Deckmann (@johandeckmann) on

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

A post shared by Johan Deckmann (@johandeckmann) on

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

A post shared by Johan Deckmann (@johandeckmann) on

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

A post shared by Johan Deckmann (@johandeckmann) on

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

A post shared by Johan Deckmann (@johandeckmann) on

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

A post shared by Johan Deckmann (@johandeckmann) on

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

A post shared by Johan Deckmann (@johandeckmann) on

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

A post shared by Johan Deckmann (@johandeckmann) on

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

A post shared by Johan Deckmann (@johandeckmann) on

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

A post shared by Johan Deckmann (@johandeckmann) on

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

A post shared by Johan Deckmann (@johandeckmann) on

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

A post shared by Johan Deckmann (@johandeckmann) on

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

A post shared by Johan Deckmann (@johandeckmann) on

Share image via Jennifer / Flickr. 

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Psychotherapist finds humor in darkness by writing hilarious self-help book covers.