Meadow Park Art show infused 'with so much life'
Talents mined to showcase contributions and capabilities during Seniors’ Month
Meadow Park Lodge resident Grace Francis’ talent so impressed visitors to the home’s recent art show that they expressed interest in buying her paintings.
She wasn’t selling the works, which included precious paintings of her daughters, but appreciates all of the compliments and interest.
“I think it was a good idea,” Francis says of show. “People seemed to enjoy it.”
Francis began painting as a teenager, took lessons and now participates in local artist Val Bradley’s art class at Meadow Park.
For the show, Francis selected four of the approximately 90 acrylics she’s done. She also answered questions of staff, residents and families viewing her works.
“I like to be creative, and I find it very interesting how you lose track of time when you do a picture,” Francis says, describing what she enjoys about painting.
Held June 9, the art show was spearheaded by staff member Tena Van Rys and celebrated Seniors’ Month. This was only the second time it’s been held at the Jarlette Health Services home in London but it grew exponentially.
“We had no idea it would come with so much life,” life enrichment co-ordinator Michelle Bronsard says, noting the initiative inspired a “new sense of beauty and hope” in all who participated.
The striking visual showcase instantly illustrates residents’ capabilities and contributions, which is a driving force behind Seniors’ Month.
“It’s a boost of self-esteem (for residents),” Bronsard adds, as they “showcase what they have to offer” and “bring joy to everybody.”
The show mined some previously unknown talents, with many residents and families remarking on the quality and quantity of art presented.
It was also a community builder, Bronsard notes, with entries coming from all corners as energy around the event intensified.
A staff member, for instance, brought in some of his own drawings, while other employees offered pieces by their children and other family members. A Meadow Park volunteer also connected the show with art program participants at Hutton House, a community organization supporting people who have disabilities.
The approximately 50 works on display — most of them paintings— were also created by Meadow Park’s art class participants and individual residents.
“It really brought everybody together as one,” Bronsard says.
“It’s great to see the talents that everyone has and their willingness to share those talents.”
Based on the enthusiastic support of this year’s event, Bronsard anticipates it will grow again next year.
“We may have to find an area bigger than the front lounge (to house the show),” she says.
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