Although the brain ages and memories become harder to recapture, creative self-expression—and the joy and sense of pride it brings—has not waned for the Alzheimer’s patients whose artwork will be on display at this year’s Comprehensive Services on Aging day program’s 2nd Annual Art Show and Food Drive.
On December 12, members of the media are invited to join the artists and their families and friends as they experience a presentation of 3-D artwork, which includes hand-painted fans, wind chimes and birdhouses; a hanging collage, a flip book of hand-colored mandalas, a king-sized quilt comprised of squares decorated by each client and staff member and hand-stitched by one of the staff, and other creations.
Last year’s show featured two-dimensional works; a video of the event can be seen at: http://bit.ly/TtaD9n
The clients will also be collecting non-perishable food items that will be donated to a local food pantry in time for the holidays. Last year’s drive—the group’s first—yielded 266 food items, which went to a food pantry in time for Thanksgiving. The clients expressed gratification about being empowered to help others less fortunate. This year, they hope to collect over 300 items.
According to the Alzheimer’s Association’s “2012 Alzheimer’s Disease Facts and Figures,” there are 5.3 million Americans living with the disease, including 150,000 living in New Jersey. Studies have shown that the cognitive enrichment provided by creative expression in patients with Alzheimer’s disease can promote benefits such as positive emotional responses, reduced agitation, greater social interaction, functional improvements, increased food intake, reduced stress and overall improved quality of life.