Art Created by Individuals Living with Dementia

Art Gallery Exhibit Showcases Works Created Through ARTZ Philadelphia

A painting with a warm color pallete and small textural mark making

PHILADELPHIA, PA (9/10/2018) – The Philadelphia Foundation today announced the organization will showcase a vibrant new art exhibit in its offices as part of a partnership with ARTZ Philadelphia. The new exhibit named “It Feels Like Freedom” — When Creativity Transcends A Diagnosis will be on display from Mon., Sept. 17, 2018 through Fri., Jan. 25, 2019 at the Community Art Gallery of The Philadelphia Foundation, located at 1835 Market St., Suite 2410.

The exhibition features works created by participants in ARTZ Philadelphia’s programs that are held in long-term care communities or during events at ARTZ Philadelphia’s partner museums, care communities and memory centers.

The artists are individuals living with memory loss, dementia and chronic illness. The collaborative works were created by program participants with dementia and their care partners or community volunteers. The two dozen works on display include watercolors, acrylics, and mixed media works on paper by individual artists, along with collaborative nine-foot painted banners and large weavings. The banners and weavings will be offered for sale.

About the Exhibition Title: “It Feels like Freedom”

The exhibition draws its title from a comment made by a participant, Sylvia M., in a bi-weekly program facilitated by ARTZ Philadelphia at York Nursing and Rehabilitation Center in West Oak Lane.

A painting with greens and blues in a circular motif

“It feels like freedom: I can do whatever I want,” says Sylvia M., who is living with dementia. Through the program she has rediscovered what it feels like to be inspired, to be freed — for a time — from the everyday bonds of illness and provided with the liberty to make her own choices, a rare commodity for someone living with a chronic illness such as dementia.

Sylvia went to beauty school when she was young, became “an expert in making people beautiful” and finds that self-expression through art gives her the ability to make connections that might not otherwise take place, so she can “make conversations” with those who view what she has created.

The artists in the exhibit, like Sylvia, look forward to the conversations and connections that “It Feels Like Freedom” inspires. Groups wishing to tour the gallery are asked to make arrangements two weeks in advance of their visit and individuals wishing to visit are asked to make arrangements 24 hours in advance. Contact Maggi Kirk, Development and Donor Services Officer, at 215-863-8105,

Read the full press release and find information about The Philadelphia Foundation, The Community Art Gallery here:

Press release also published in City Suburban News, September 12th issue:

Exhibition featured in Community Foundation Update from Philanthropy News Digest:

RSVP to join us for the public opening reception on October 5th.