Creative Connections Art & Poetry Exhibitions Executive Committee
Co Coordinators: Patti Ferber & Gary De Piazzi
Secretary: Jan Padgett assisted by Val Neubecker
Treasurer: Gary De Piazzi
Poetry Coordinator: Val Neubecker
Art Coordinators: Jane Davis (Nulsen Disability Services)
Gareth Goodway (Ability Centre)
Geraldine Pillinger (InteLife)
Garvey Park Art Workshops Coordinator: Jan Mason
Publicity: Tineke Van der Eecken
Committee: Coral Carter
Developing creative connections through art and poetry.
The organisers of Creative Connections believe:
- art and poetry are important avenues for people to express themselves creatively.
- artists with complex needs have the right to creative expression.
- all people should be recognised for their ability and not their disability.
- avenues should exist for all members of the community to connect.
- all people deserve to be treated equally with dignity, sensitivity and courtesy.
- all people deserve respect and their knowledge, abilities and experiences should be valued.
- To enhance community awareness of the creative ability of people with complex needs .
- To provide opportunities for artists with complex needs and poets to work creatively together.
- Through art, provide inspiration for poets to write poetry that is relevant to the artwork and the artist.
- To lend a voice to non-verbal artists through poetry.
- To connect a diverse community groups in a common purpose to develop networks and exchange
- Information and ideas.
- To expose artists with complex needs and their carers to professional artists and related persons to broaden opportunities, share ideas, enhance and develop techniques and creativity.
- To provide opportunities to make art produced by artists with complex needs financially rewarding.
- To strive to achieve the best from everyone involved and continually seek ways to improve how things are done.
The Creative Connections project began after a discussion between a parent and a disability worker about how poets and disability workers could work together and provide an opportunity for people with disabilities to connect more with the community. The parent, Maureen Sexton, is a poet and a member of WA Poets inc. The disability worker had attended the 2005 WA Spring Poetry Festival (organised by WA Poets Inc) and had been impressed by the community atmosphere.
From that discussion, the idea surfaced to organize an art and poetry exhibition. Creative Connections seemed like a good name, as it fitted so well with the aims of the project.
Creative Connections is a not-for-profit collective run by a team of volunteers including poets, parents of artists with disabilities, disability workers and community members and is supported by many groups and individuals.
We believe art and poetry are important ways for people to express themselves creatively and we wanted to give artists with disabilities the opportunity to do this and to connect with the community and each other. Working with local poets to achieve these aims has proved to be ideal.
In particular, we wanted this to apply to high-needs people with disabilities, as it was felt that these people have the least amount of opportunity to express themselves creatively and to connect with the community.
Some of the positives from the exhibitions are:
- positive feedback about the combination of artworks, poetry and profiles
- positive public interaction, and bringing understanding, awareness and connection with artists, poets, community individuals and community groups
- rewarding for all concerned – acknowledgement and appreciation of the diverse abilities and personalities of the artists through their artworks and the accompanying poetry
- positive outcome for disability workers working on the project with residents
Creative Connections Art and Poetry Exhibitions is supported by: