After School Program, Assisted Living, Arts/Cultural Organizations, Community Center, Correctional Facilities, Independent Living, K-12 Schools, Library, Senior Center
I am a veteran arts educator, accomplished mixed media artist and creative writer, with an MFA in studio art from Northern Illinois University. Since 2013 I have focused my considerable creative energies on teaching artist/creative activist activities in the form of bringing meaningful, engaging arts experiences to those who would otherwise have no access to the arts, including the homeless, the elderly, and at-risk youth in my community. I currently hold a position with AmeriCorps KY Senior Connection in Henderson KY, and hope to continue my good works there and in southwestern Indiana.
Through my recent experience bringing the arts to elders in assisted living centers, I have learned that many of them are working through feelings of extreme loss, fear, and often anger at circumstances that seem, and often are, beyond their control. My healing and empowering arts programming helps them give voice to these difficult feelings, offers them opportunities to take creative risks in a safe setting, and gives them control over the creative process -- along with learning about art history and visual art techniques. My arts programming for elders builds confidence, acknowledges losses, celebrates lives and helps elders discover the truth, honor and power they have inside themselves despite living circumstances and actual (as well as self-imposed) limitations.