Still Got It! features senior artists Ida Ballard and Romelia Jones with selected senior artist
Creativity has no age limit. As we get older our brains become increasingly more capable at making novel associations. This exhibition demonstrates that as we grow in age, so does our aptitude for creativity and innovation.
By: Arts Unbound
The show opens with a reception on Thursday, March 8, from 6 pm to 8 pm, and will be on view through March 31 at the Dora Stern Gallery at Arts Unbound, 544 Freeman Street, Orange, NJ.
Ida Ballard writes, "For me, the meaning of "Still Got It!" is more about continuing to build my rich and active life despite having muscular dystrophy than it is about aging. I have a restless creative spirit wanting to explore the magic and mystery of making images. My paintings and collages evolve as I paint and paste. All of nature; landscape, human and animal forms, are a constant part of my expressed vision."
Each work on paper by Romelia Jones begins with a live model or still life arrangement as inspiration. She will often combine a variety of media in her works on paper with unique and distinctive use of ink, watercolor, pastel, collaged paper and fabric. She writes, "My work reflects my love of God, people and nature, specifically, animals and flowers, which I love to draw, paint and share with others. However, I am not necessarily trying to draw or paint them exactly as they are, which can't be done anyway, but as I feel they are. When I capture this feeling in my work, I experience great joy."
Ida Ballard and Romelia Jones each began turning their passion for making art into a profession with help from the Career Coaching Program at Arts Unbound. The program is a designed to help artists with disabilities and emerging senior artists build self-advocacy skills and relationships with art patrons. Working one-on-one with our coach, participants set employment goals and develop action plans. Program staff assists artists to find opportunities to exhibit, market and sell their work.
Many of the artists featured in this exhibition are participants in The Elder Art Ambassadors Program at Arts Unbound; a nine-month program where seniors receive training in the visual arts including drawing, painting, mixed media, and upcycling to prepare them to become art instructors themselves. At the conclusion of the training period, the Elder Art Ambassadors lead community art classes for their peers. Last year, the Elder Art Ambassadors passed on their artistic knowledge to more than 50 senior students.
This exhibit was made possible in part by a grant from the Grotta Fund for Senior Care of the Jewish Community Foundation of Greater MetroWest NJ.
In the spirit of the show, art patrons who are seniors 65 and older may take a 10% discount on any art purchase from this exhibit.
Arts Unbound is dedicated to the artistic achievement of people living with disabilities and seniors. They provide visual arts education and professional development to help emerging artists compete on the retail market. By promoting the work of artists with disabilities and seniors, Arts Unbound centers their art-making rather than any impairments and by doing so challenges the stigma associated with disability and aging. http://www.artsunbound.org
Celene Ryan, Marketing Director, Arts Unbound