Atrium Gallery features Alzheimer’s Association exhibit

February 5, 2013

Colored Storm by Mildred

One of dementia’s tragic effects is the loss of intellectual and creative outlets. Intelligent people who once were resourceful problem-solvers in myriad vocations and pastimes become unable to express themselves through the work of their minds and hands.

But if they can hold a paintbrush, they can create pictures. The Alzheimer’s Association-North Central Texas Chapter helps them do just that with an art program called Memories in the Making. At various dementia care facilities, program coordinator Lisa Buck and trained facilitators provide paints and encouragement. Twenty-two of the resulting watercolors are on exhibit at the UNT Health Science Center. They’re available for purchase via an online auction benefiting Memories in the Making.

The exhibit, "Heart, Mind, Hand: Paintings by People with Dementia," is free and open to the public through February. You’ll find it on the south and east walls of Floor 2 in the Everett building, 3500 Camp Bowie Blvd.

Each title placard includes a QR code for bidding, and the artist’s first name and remarks. One of the artists is Edward, a gentle man who doesn’t speak much anymore. His wife is dead and he has no children. His painting is an abstract cloud of complementary colors with a blank white space in the center. He titled it That’s Me.

Dementia research and geriatrics are among UNTHSC’s greatest strengths. "There’s a huge need to know more about dementias," said Buck. "The Health Science Center does such great work in that area," Buck said. "I hope the researchers will view these paintings and provide insight on what’s going on in these people’s brains when they paint."

One of the artists, Mildred, painted bold, vertical brushstrokes in greens, yellows and fuchsia and titled it Colored Storm. She said, "Maybe I have a little talent. I never painted anything in my life and now they’re telling me it’s good."

Rockport 9 exhibit on Atrium first floor

Texas landscapes and scenes come alive in an exhibit by the Rockport 9 on the Atrium Gallery’s first floor. These artists are drawn together by their love of painting "plein aire," focusing on places they’ve visited. They are Lisa Baer, Angalee DeForest, Anita Diebel, Susan Forrest, Mary Frazier, Caro Jackson, Carol Koutnik, Betty Shamel and Ann Reimer, all Rockport residents. Their "strokes" are varied, including oil, acrylic, watercolor, collage and pastel.

This exhibit, also free and open to the public, continues through March.

The galleries are open 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. weekdays and by appointment.


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