This article proposes collage as a cyclical epistemology for art therapy and arts-based research practice. Characteristics of collage and a cycle of construction, deconstruction, and reconstruction are presented and intertwined with post-structuralism. Construction, as a stable state of being, focuses on collage's ability to re-purpose materials and hold space. Deconstruction, as an unstable act of fragmenting and juxtaposing, emphasizes collage as a deconstructive event. Reconstruction, as the ongoing process of becoming, focuses on the layers of meaning within collage and its ability to impermanently stabilize. Through this cycle, collage becomes a way of creating, thinking, and being. Furthermore, collage can be considered a fitting epistemology for identity development due to its infinite entanglements, continuous simultaneity, constant instability, and ongoing state of becoming. Together, deconstruction and collage suggest methods for arts-based research, propose a theoretical perspective for art therapy, and provide an ontology and epistemology to guide research, leading to meaning making, potentiality, and a desirable ongoing state of impermanence.

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