Cristina Maria Fort Garcés
Licensed Creative Arts Therapist, LCAT
Accepting new clients for daytime and evening appointments
Offers remote video sessions
Teenagers (13 - 18)
Young adults / college students (18 - 24)
Mon: 10:00am, 11:00am, 4:15pm, 7:00pm
Tue: 2:15pm, 3:15pm, 5:15pm
Thu: 3:15pm, 5:15pm, 6:15pm, 7:15pm
Specialties & expertise
Creative arts psychotherapy
Cristina Maria Fort Garcés is a Licensed Creative Arts Therapist at CristinaMaria Psychotherapy in Midtown South, Manhattan. For the past 10 years Cristina has specialized in using somatic (body based) and creative interventions to approach depression, anxiety, trauma, self-esteem, life transitions and strengthening interpersonal communication. Cristina particularly enjoys working with adults and adolescents to find creative and self-identified ways to expand their ability to hold and express emotion, thus strengthening and developing coping skills.
Cristina’s approach to therapy is holistic, using mindfulness and creative interventions to enhance clients’ ability to get their needs met and to make choices with more awareness and agency. She assists clients in tuning into their bodies, beliefs, and patterns in order to increase their ability to stay present and move more ably through difficult life circumstances. This process also supports opening up to more freedom, fluidity and possibility.
Cristina offers the option of expressive art making and body-centered psychotherapy alongside talk therapy to help clients tap into the core issues that can be difficult to put into words. She believes that through creative interventions and attending to somatic experience that clients can generate a fuller understanding of their internal and interpersonal struggles in order to move into new behaviors and growth.
Cristina offers a safe and welcoming environment in which clients are encouraged to bring their whole selves. Cristina hopes that through self-exploration and discovery, clients can ultimately grow, reaching healthier versions of themselves. She offers sessions in both English and Spanish in her practice, a ten-minute walk from Penn Station.
Anxiety – Coping with excessive worry, nervousness, or stress; intense discomfort in social settings (social anxiety); sudden and intense feelings of panic (panic disorder)
Depression – Providing support and promoting healing through hopelessness, low motivation and energy, sadness, irritability, sleep disturbance, and loss of interest and pleasure in life
Existential concerns – Supportive exploration of meaning and purpose in one’s life; finding one’s path in the face of existential anxiety, dread, and feelings of meaninglessness
Identity issues – Understanding, accepting, and strengthening one’s sense of self through the exploration of family, work, and personal values
LGBTQIA and sexuality topics – Exploring topics of sexuality, gender, and identity; coping with discrimination and oppression; navigating relationship, family, and cultural challenges
Life transitions – Coping with difficult or impactful life changes, such as moving to a new area, relationship transitions, child rearing, or career changes; learning self-care to better manage resulting stress
Loss and grief – Emotionally preparing for the anticipated passing of a loved one; managing feelings and reactions to a death or loss of significance; support during the process of healing and acceptance
Race and cultural identity – Exploring topics of racial, cultural, and ethnic background as it relates to one’s family origins and personal identity
Religious issues – Resolving conflicts between personal values, choices, and religion; addressing religious tensions within families; connecting religious traditions and practice with daily living; exploring a new relationship with religion and spirituality
Self-esteem – Cultivating self-compassion, assertiveness, and confidence; developing ways to reduce suffering, anxiety, social withdrawal, and self-neglect
Spirituality – Exploring beliefs and practices related to meaning, existence, and spiritual health and healing; enjoying a deeper felt connection with the spiritual dimension of one's life
Trauma – Coping and healing after threatening or scary events, such as witnessing accidents or experiencing sexual, verbal, emotional, or physical abuse
Cristina is not in-network with any insurances.
Read about the benefits of seeing an out-of-network provider here.
Initial/ongoing sessions: $150 (50min)
Sliding scale: A sliding scale of $125 - $150/session is offered to clients who need a reduced fee to receive therapy.
Therapist's note: Cristina can provide you with paperwork for your insurance company if you are seeking out-of-network reimbursement.
Message to clients
“Our pain can be difficult to understand, approach, and move through leaving us overwhelmed, stuck, or numb. My approach is grounded in the process of self-discovery through embodied attunement. This process facilitates integration and self-acceptance in order to move into growth - the unfamiliar, healthy risk taking, and aware choice making. Our work together may include traditional talk therapy, art making, movement, body awareness, dream work and role play. Feelings and sensations are your inner resources, therefore, I will support and challenge you in taking responsibility for your growth through your embodied experience.”
Treatment approachesCreative Arts PsychotherapyIn creative arts psychotherapy, clients, facilitated by the art therapist, use art media, the creative process, and the resulting artwork to explore their feelings, reconcile emotional conflicts, foster self-awareness, manage behavior and addictions, develop social skills, improve reality orientation, reduce anxiety, and increase self-esteem. (learn more)
Developmental Somatic PsychotherapyDevelopmental somatic psychotherapy is a process that recognizes the intimate relationship between the human body and the psychological well-being of a person. (learn more)
Existential Therapy Existential therapy is a therapy approach that both embraces human potential and recognizes human limitation. The breadth of existential theory falls into four major themes, which it sees as the root of most psychological problems: 1) Death, 2) Freedom (& Responsibility), 3) Isolation, and 4) Meaninglessness. (learn more)
Gestalt TherapyIn gestalt therapy, self-awareness is key to personal growth and developing full potential. The approach recognizes that sometimes this self-awareness can become blocked by negative thought patterns and behavior that can leave people feeling dissatisfied and unhappy. (learn more)
Mindfulness PracticesMindfulness practices include but are not limited to developing awareness, attention, and remembering. In mindfulness-informed therapy, clients develop tools to become aware of what is occurring within and around them, so they can begin to untangle from mental preoccupations and difficult emotions. Self-acceptance and compassion are also core elements of mindfulness-informed therapy. (learn more)
Education and work experience
Kings County Hospital Center, Health Plus Hospitals Corporations, Inpatient Adult Psychiatric Care, Creative Arts Therapist, Provided group and individual therapy, mental health crisis interventions, and treatment planning to adults and adolescents, 2012-2019.
New York Psychotherapy and Counseling Services, Outpatient, Primary Psychotherapist, Provided individual psychotherapy sessions to adults, adolescents, children and families, 2011-2012.
HeartShare Human Services, Family Preventative Services, Case Planner - Creative Arts Therapist - Parenting Journey Group Leader, providing care to families at risk for foster care placement, 2010 - 2011.
The Center for Somatic Studies in Developmental Somatic Psychotherapy, 2-year post graduate training program, 2019
The Gestalt Associates for Psychotherapy, Post Graduate Clinical Fellowship in Gestalt Psychotherapy, 2016
The School of Visual Arts, Masters in Creative Arts Therapy, 2010
The Hallmark School of Photography, Certificate, 2005
Tufts University, Undergraduate, 2004