Eagle's Trace, the Erickson Senior Living community in West Houston, Tex., opened a fine arts gallery on its campus in September. The special occasion was celebrated with a wine and cheese reception.
The first exhibit featured works by 12 residents and one employee; their media of choice included watercolor, oil, acrylic, pastel, pencil, black ink, and photography.
Unique resident artwork
“The fine arts gallery opened to showcase original resident art,” says Louise Baldaro, who serves on the fine arts committee with fellow artists Merrilyn Meushaw, Mary Burkwall, Richard Schwarz, and Community Resources Coordinator Lisa Baughn. “As we’ve spread the word, it’s incredible to discover how much original art there is in our community.”
Louise moved to Eagle’s Trace ten years ago from the historic Houston Heights neighborhood. A specialist in art quilting, Louise began teaching an art quilting class. In turn, she had the opportunity to learn from other artists who live at Eagle’s Trace. Louise took a Zentangle class from Merrilyn and discovered a love for a new form of expression.
These artists are vital participants in the community’s resident-run clubs and activities, which are an integral part of the social fabric at Eagle’s Trace. Currently, a resident-led ARTspiration class meets every Friday afternoon in the creative arts studio in the Audubon Clubhouse.
The pieces showcased in the fine arts gallery change monthly.
“In October and November, we featured the work of one of our resident photographers, Tom Snodgrass,” says Louise. “When we were planning out each month’s exhibit, it became clear that some artists had enough pieces for an entire show.”
From November to December, the gallery showcased a new variety of artists and their work. Louise notes the variety of original art created by residents includes basket bowls, fabric dolls, silk screen, and more.
“There’s an astounding amount of talent and creativity represented among those who live here,” she says.
A valuable addition
Sarah Roush, a retired high school math teacher, says she’s not an artist but still appreciates the value the fine arts gallery brings to the community.
“This is a wonderful expression of individuality and such an important feature to so many of us,” says Sarah. “All this lovely art was here, and the fine arts committee recognized how beautiful it is. The gallery is an important addition to Eagle’s Trace, especially since we know the artists. That makes it even more meaningful.”
Reason to celebrate
“Art is something I need to do,” says Louise, “I miss it when I’m not working on a project. The fine arts gallery came at a good time. It’s a way to bring us all back together and celebrate how much creativity we have among our residents.”
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