ArtWalk features ageing creatively exhibition

No boundaries: Residents of Catholic Care of the Aged will be participating in an ageing creatively exhibition as part of the April 20, ArtWalk.

No boundaries: Residents of Catholic Care of the Aged will be participating in an ageing creatively exhibition as part of the April 20, ArtWalk.

The 2017 version of ArtWalk will see digitally projected artworks guiding the public through top arts and cultural locations in and around the Port Macquarie CBD.

The event is on Thursday April from 6pm until 9pm.

Considered a multi-venue cultural event, ArtWalk enables the public to explore local collections and discover local artists exhibiting in unconventional spaces.

The night includes live art work, music and entertainment in pop-up spaces with businesses around the CBD providing space to artists to exhibit their art.

And ArtWalk shows that creativity has no age barrier.

Residents from Catholic Care of the Aged’s (CCA) Emmaus, St Agnes, Mount Carmel and Maryknoll, as well as those from Vincent Court, will this year participate in Artwalk.

Their works – part of the ageing creatively exhibition – are included in a display in the CWA Hall on Town Green.

This work showcases inventive and engaging paintings, prints and ceramics produced by residents through CCA’s creative ageing programs, as well as a musical bell piece performed by the program’s frail aged residents.

CCA director Joy Walsh says residents are excited to showcase their talents.

“The residents are thrilled to present their results through this community event,” Mrs Walsh said. 

Recent studies have shown what creative professionals have known for years: that engaging with creative arts contributes significantly to our health and wellbeing.

This is particularly true for ageing persons with cognitive decline. Port Macquarie has the third highest prevalence of dementia in NSW.

Catholic Care of the Aged, as part of St Agnes’ Parish, is committed to creating a dementia-friendly community and, as part of their efforts, offer a wide range of engaging programs including visual arts, music and TimeSlips creative storytelling for people with cognitive decline.

The programs, facilitated by Ronne Webb and Shirley Moffat (CCA Lifestyle Facilitators), Lisa Hort (Creative Ageing Practitioner) and Yvonne Kiely (Art Therapist), offer residents a chance to hone their craft or develop new skills.

It is also an opportunity to socialise with like-minded residents and have a bit of fun.

“I have a genuine interest in art of all forms,” said Emmaus resident Margaret Jefferey, “Art keeps me occupied and active for part of my day. It exercises my brain and I enjoy participating with other people who have like-minded thoughts to me”.

CCA staff have witnessed positive outcomes as a result of the creative ageing programs, particularly in those with cognitive decline.

“We’ve seen residents who have struggled to engage with staff and others become much happier and more relaxed as a result of the program, re-connecting with life,” Ms Walsh said.

The residents are proud of their results and the opportunity given by Artwalk to exhibit their creations in the community.

ArtWalk is on Thursday  April 20 from 6pm until 9pm, with the ageing creatively exhibition in the CWA Hall on Town Green.

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