ART IN THE MOMENT

Event showcases art of individuals living with Alzheimer’s, dementia

The Art in the Moment art show, which features works by people living Alzheimer’s disease or dementia who are participants in Lake Superior Adult Day Services, will be held from 6 to 8 p.m. Friday at the Marquette Regional History Center. The event, which is a fundraiser for Lake Superior Adult Day Services, celebrates the creativity of these local artists. Selected original works of art and prints by artsits will be for sale at Friday’s event. Pictured, Barbra Knox, art instructor, looks on as Lake Superior Adult Day Services attendees paint with watercolors during one of their art classes. Art and music classes are regularly offered for Lake Superior Adult Day Services participants, giving attendees a joyful outlet for creative expression. (Photo courtesy of Lake Superior Adult Day Services)

MARQUETTE — The process of making art can be a cherished activity that allows people of all ages to find joy and express themselves creatively. The Art in the Moment show, which features works of art done by individuals who are living with Alzheimer’s disease or dementia, celebrates the joy of artistic expression.

The show serves as a fundraiser for Lake Superior Adult Day Services, and will be held from 6 to 8 p.m. Friday at the Marquette Regional History Center, as the city of Marquette has proclaimed May to be Lake Superior Adult Day Services Month.

The art show is a collaborative effort by the Lake Superior Life Care & Hospice, Marquette Regional History Center, the city of Marquette Arts and Culture Center and Northern Michigan University’s DeVos Art Museum.

The art featured in the show includes original watercolors, ceramics, silks and colorful window kites created by Lake Superior Adult Day Services participants.

Many of the original works are available for purchase, with art prints and notecards of selected works also available to buy.

The show features a piece from every Lake Superior Adult Day Services participant — art is a regular piece of programming there, as it can offer a joyful creative outlet for participants, organizers said.

“It unlocks what’s still hidden inside of them,” said Mary Holkko of Lake Superior Life Care & Hospice.

Holkko said creative outlets give participants a way to share “that expression of self, the expression that’s inside their hearts still.”

Sue Kitti, CEO of Lake Superior Life Care & Hospice, added: “Participants want to give back, these are things they want to do.”

In addition to offering regular art classes for participants, which are led twice a month by local artist and art teacher Barbra Knox, music classes are also offered by Cathy Houghton as another form of creative expression.

By offering creative outlets such as art and music, the program can give participants a chance to express themselves creatively and do activities they have enjoyed throughout their lives.

The art created by participants is also a source of joy for their families, friends and loved ones, Holkko and Kitti said, as it can be another way for them to connect with the artist and see the creativity and unique perspective of their loved one.

“This art touches people in just these special ways,” Holkko said.

Beyond offering art and music, Lake Superior Adult Day Services also provides opportunities for attendees to socialize, dance, garden, take field trips and volunteer their time and skills to local organizations with peers.

“As they get to be with their peers, they get time away that’s just time for them,” Holkko said. “And they get to feel more like themselves and their former life, that they have some place to go that’s just for them, something geared special for them and an activity that they get to look forward to every day.”

The program, which runs 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday, Tuesday and Thursday at the Messiah Lutheran Church in Marquette, can be beneficial for caregivers, as well as attendees.

“For their caregivers, it’s that respite that they need — whether it’s to go to work, whether it’s to do appointments or whether it’s just to take a break — because they have so much going on in their life, it can be overwhelming sometimes,” Holkko said.

Organizers said all are welcome, and encouraged family, friends, loved ones and community members to attend the show and enjoy art, wine and hors d’oeuvres.

The Friday reception will honor the artists, as well as Miriam Hilton, co-founder of Lake Superior Adult Day Services. Angel C. Duncan, a renowned art therapist, will also give a brief presentation at the event.

The recent proclamation by the city of Marquette, which made May Lake Superior Adult Day Services Month, will also be read at the event.

For those unable to attend Friday’s reception but who wish to purchase artwork or prints, art will be available for purchase at the Marquette Regional History Center through the end of May.

For more information on the show, call Darlene Weisinger, volunteer chairwoman at 906-236-2196, or the Lake Superior Life Care & Hospice office at 906-225-7760.

For more information on Lake Superior Adult Day Services, visit www.lakesuperiorhospice.org/.

Cecilia Brown can be reached at 906-228-2500, ext. 248.