Online Exhibits

Welcome to Online Exhibits

Through online classes and exhibits, AWE is able to reach out to seniors in a new way. Artist-participants interact with their instructor and classmates through the Zoom meeting platform. Weekly classes include a lesson presentation, classwork review, and work time. Classwork is then selected and shared for display in online exhibitions.

Resilient! An online exhibit featuring works by our current program participants. July 15-Sept 15, 2020

We are very proud to present our first exhibit since our program has gone online due to the pandemic. We will continue to exhibit new classwork on a bi-monthly schedule, and have other exciting exhibition plans in the works!

Through these challenging times, we have worked to stay in touch with our participants by mail, email, phone, Facetime, and Zoom. There have been many hurdles, but we remain determined to offer friendship, and a creative outlet, to seniors during this period of heightened stress and isolation during which many are quarantined, unable to even visit with family members.

In March, when health risks to seniors curtailed our usual in-person classes, we began offering online classes. Instructors and Artist-Participants now meet weekly via Zoom. The online classes are a bright spot of hope and joy for us all. We meet once a week for two hours for art instruction and social interaction. Individuals and groups, living independently or residing at senior living communities, are invited to sign up for our classes. $15 suggested donation for individuals requested, but not required, first class is free. Group rates and full scholarship available. See our Online Classes page for more information. Please email our Director, Mark Campbell, for details and signup, mark@artwithelders.org.

Individuals and groups living independently or residing at senior living communities are invited to sign up for our classes. $15 suggested donation for individuals requested, but not required, first class is free. Group rates and full scholarship available

For this exhibit, “Resilient!,” we have included one piece from each artist participating in our online program who chose to submit entries. The group represents 85 artists across the Bay Area from Vallejo to San Jose.

We are also currently exhibiting a small but powerful collection of works called “Pandemic Response Art” featuring works by artists from our Vallejo Hills and Friends class.
Enjoy!

Resilient!

Vallejo Hills and Friends with Darcie

Susan McCown

Susan, from California, retired to Hawaii where she enjoyed the beauty of nature. As a member of the group, Wise Old Women (WOW), she painted, created pottery, arranged flowers, and learned the art of “Healing Touch.” She returned to Vallejo to be near her family. A resident of Vallejo Hills, she enjoys the sense of community there. She has become a dedicated member of the AWE class. Fellow classmate and husband Larry says of his partner,  “She’s an artful soul!”

Larry McCown

Larry, from California, worked on Mare Island in the ship-building and nuclear submarine industries. Larry retired to Vallejo Hills where he met his wife, fellow AWE student, Susan. Susan encouraged Larry to join her in art class. He enjoys coloring geometric designs with glitter gels pens, and also works on the computer using graphics software. In class with Susan and friends, he jokes, “It’s all her fault, and I love it…I really do enjoy this, what I am doing!”

Heart of Many Colors

Mary Ann Taylor

I am a retired elementary teacher.  I taught all grades during my career and my favorite grade was fifth, because of the students’ interest and the curriculum.  I also taught in Finland and Taiwan.  I loved the cultural experience and making lasting friends.  I enjoy the Art With Elders’ classes, since I did not have time to study art until I retired.

Fran Marcus

Melinda Allen

Sandra Collister

I have been an artist wannabe, for some time. I collect art supplies with a yearning to create, but then, the supplies sit unused.  Just this summer, under supervision of Darcie at Art With Elders, I’ve been able to sit down and focus on creating an image or two that actually please me and that I can feel good about.  I take to heart the statement, “to create takes courage.”

John Collister

Covid-19 has no side effects or symptoms that are desirable, sought after, or pleasant.  To my delight because of the stay at home mentality I decided to participate in the AWE on-line class.  Surprisingly, I am enjoying the experience.  Previously some years ago, I had taken a day long watercolor class wherein I had failed drawing distance stick figure people.  I give to Darcie for her guidance a thankful virtual hug.

Insio Che

Insio Che has a BFA degree in Illustration and MM degree in piano Pedagogy. She has been teaching Art and Piano in SF/Bay area over 20 years.  www.insioart.com

Insio has been teaching with AWE since 2005, this is her first time taking Darcie’s online class with her daughter, Chelsea Lee. They enjoy and appreciate Darcie’s class weekly. Insio completed this “Cherry Blossom” watercolor painting in May (cherry picking season) for the class theme: Nature.

Chelsea Lee

Chelsea Lee is 8 years old.  This is her first time taking online class with her mother and she enjoyed it very much.  Chelsea completed this “Tree House” in May for the class theme: Favorite Place.  She said: “I like art because I can be creative and make beautiful artworks.  I like to use color-pencils because it won’t leak through like markers and it is easier than other mediums; it is more focus on drawing which I like it better.”

Kay Talbot

I am indebted to Art With Elders for providing a new experience with art. To me art is a different way of seeing our world. When I was in practice as a life transitions counselor, I used drawing and collage with some of my clients. This was especially effective with adults and children who were grieving a loss. I am the author of a workbook titled “What Happens Next: Messages from Heaven.” It provides space to answer contemplative questions with writing, drawing, and/or painting. I am a resident of Vallejo Hills retirement community in Vallejo where I first learned about AWE. Thank you for your wonderful art courses.

Pamela Osborne

I love to sit and sketch, not looking at my paper to make sure it “looks” right as a meditative process.  When I can bypass all the negative talk in my head, the final art piece always humbles and amazes me. Then I experience what is possible.  

Shirley Keller

Spirit Hill Meditation Garden and Art Studio, in Three Rivers, is Keller’s favorite place to be, letting the creative energies have the day. Keller plays with clay, focusing on ceramic masks. Repurposed items like hubcaps, skill saws, horseshoes, and more, are made into art pieces with dots of acrylic. Mixing words and art is her latest exploration on canvas and hubcaps. Gift Cards Keller designs from her photography. Keller’s art work grew out of her love of writing, which she does every morning. Coordinator for 1st Saturday in Three Rivers, a monthly art event.

Darcie O’Brien
AWE Artist Instructor
and Exhibits Manager

I’ve been teaching with AWE for almost 8 years, but this is my first online class. The “students” inspire me, I am impressed how brave and dedicated everybody is! I learn a lot from everyone and really value the friendships that have developed through our working together. I did this painting for our class assignment, now I just need to finish it!

Oak Center Towers with Insio

Kekun Ouyang

“Follow your heart and your passion,” says this native of China with a smile, “and keep doing what you want to do.” And that’s what he is doing today in his art class. KeKun loves to go to local beaches, the forest, and Yellowstone National park—all of which feed his love of nature.  KeKun hadn’t picked up a paint brush since his days in elementary school. Now he creates and composes his own art and especially likes to paint animals from pictures.

Hui Lan Li

Born in the Canton province of China in 1940, Hui Lan came to the U.S. in 2000, worked as an elementary school teacher in China. She married in 1964 and has two daughters and two grandchildren. She describes herself as a happy person who loves to be of service to others. In addition to caring for her husband and apartment, she helps out at the local farmers’ market. AWE classes have been her first experience in art. Her favorite medium is acrylics.

Insio Che

Insio has a BFA degree in Illustration and MM degree in piano Pedagogy. She has been teaching Art and Piano in SF/Bay area over 20 years.  www.insioart.com. Insio started teaching with AWE since 2005 and at Oak Center Towers since June 2010. There are 10-11 enthusiastic elders participate in the art class weekly, many like to work on their arts outside of the class daily.  It has been very difficult for everyone during the pandemic, Insio is happy to stay connected with all of her students and continue to teach some of them virtually. Everyone is grateful and look forward to this Online Exhibition. 

Belmont Village, Western Park Apartments, and El Bethel
with Mei Mei

Yu Mei Lu

Born in China, Mei came to live in San Francisco in 2007 to be near her daughter. She also has a son in Boston and three grandchildren, and enjoys playing  piano, cross-stitching, and knitting. Mei loves the feeling of freedom that painting gives her, especially with acrylics. Art, she feels, increases your self-confidence, and “makes your life happy and peaceful.” Her advice: “Art is from the inside–it’s your idea. Don’t let outside things cover your inside things.”

Margaret Miller

Margaret Mary was born in Chicago and moved to California in her teens. After attending Brooks Institute of Photography, she opened a photo studio, owned a flower shop, and later became director of Loaves and Fishes’ Service Center. Eventually she founded “Sister Nora’s Place,” a shelter for homeless schizophrenic women. Now at Belmont Village, she enjoys creating floral designs, exploring painting and reading to her grandkids. The biggest lesson she discovered and embraced: “We are all the same.”

Sarah Armstrong

Sarah Armstrong was born in Oil City, Pennsylvania. She worked for IT&T and then Campbell Soup Company where she was in charge of pay and benefits. She plays classical piano and has recently taken up the cello. She enjoys spending time with her children and grandchildren. Her advice is to “know who you are and stand on your own two feet.”

Yelena Khristovich

Yelena was born in the Ukraine and came to the U.S. in 1998. She began doing art with AWE six years ago, but a broken wrist interrupted her art-making. Her art teacher gave her exercises to help her recover from the trauma. She likes to paint in what she calls “Ukrainian style.”  She also enjoys sewing, embroidery, and knitting–a skill she uses to make blankets for babies in the neo-natal unit.

Chieko Lafferty

Chieko, always an art lover, is from Kyoto, Japan. She also enjoys reading, cooking, classical music, and taking walks. She is constantly exploring through art, seeking to develop her style. “There are rules, but rules are for breaking,” she laughs. “I love that!” For example, she will refigure classical compositions with a cubist technique and use origami paper for collage. “If I paint something and everyone says, ‘That’s Chieko’, that is what I want.”

Alice Gibbons

Alice studied art in San Francisco and Paris. She has worked devotedly to achieve a high degree of competence which has paid off handsomely in local, national and international exhibits of her work. She is represented by galleries in the U.S. and abroad, and her prints especially are in many private collections. She’s always determined to find a way to express herself. “I find I become quite peaceful in this process,” she notes, “it’s nutrition for the soul. I feel better physically, too.”  

Masha Beylin

 

Mei Mei Everson
AWE Artist Instructor

On Lok East San Jose, On Lok Peralta, and Ageway Boarding Care with Dmitry

M. Hoang

N. Huynh


Andy Banh

Andy was born in Vietnam and immigrated to U.S in 1987. Andy never dreamed of painting until he joined an art class at On Lok. He’s been painting for four years, and enjoys copying pictures from old calendars. As a Buddhist, he believes in benevolent kindness. He is always happy to help people, particularly the homeless. His philosophy of life is: “No matter what religion you are, if you believe in kindness you will find happiness and peace.”

Carlos Chavez

Carlos was born in Chihuahua, Mexico and later settled in San Jose. As an 18-year member of the Cement and Concrete Workers Union, Carlos has helped build many Bay Area freeways before his retirement. He and his wife Virginia have four children and several grandchildren. Carlos likes to sing karaoke, loves corridos and norteña music, plays the piano, and even composes some of his own songs. He also enjoys painting, which he finds very relaxing. This charming artist with a wonderful sense of humor says of himself, pointing to his chest: “This heart is very big. Everybody fits here.”

Lan Lai

Mr. Lan-Lai was born in Vietnam, where he worked as a national nurse and as an interpreter. He has two children and four grand-children, and enjoys taking nature walks and playing with radio-controlled airplanes. Despite some vision issues, he and his wife faithfully attend the weekly art classes. His teacher Dmitry says that Mr. Lan-Lai’s signature mark is his ability to create a soft pastel-like light tone in his images, using colored pencils.

M. Nguyen

 

M. Olea

 

C. Tran

 

J. Taco

 

M. Solis

 

A. Tran

 

H. Tran

Huong Vo

Huong was born in Vietnam and has always devoted her life to her children and grandchildren. She loves to cook and exercise. She advises: “Love all living things and don’t ever lose your temper.” Huong believes in the importance of hard work and patience. AWE is her first experience with art, as she never had the luxury of doing art until now. Huong always does her best working on the scene that her art teacher Dmitry provides and feels content to pour all her emotions into her art. “It’s like a therapy to me,” she says.

Maria Alfaro

Born in El Salvador, Maria went to New York with her three children. A widow, she now lives alone, with her children in the area. Maria has always done beautiful embroidery. “I made beautiful things,” she says. She enjoys reading and rare outings to beaches, rivers, and lakes. It’s important to her to be of service to others, especially to newcomers, but she regrets her limited English skills. Her teacher Dmitri recognizes Maria’s natural talent with color, as she uses vivid colors and sees color in intense ways.

Hamida Asif

Hamida, from Pakistan, describes herself as a happy person. “I have everything I desire and I thank God for my health and my children,” she says. She and her husband immigrated to the U.S. about 16 years ago to be with their five children and 13 grandchildren. Hamida likes to watch television and enjoys doing needlework. She likes to cook for her family on holidays. Her family especially loves her delicious biryani. Her AWE classes are her first experience with art. She is open to any medium and has recently discovered acrylic on canvas. Landscapes are her favorite subject.

 

Nordmann Fernandez

From San Salvador, Nordmann a father of six with a passion for reading, worked in law offices and government for many years. “I haven’t been a saint, nor a wise man,” says this elder artist with a great sense of humor, “but I respect God and His creation.” He likes to serve others and enjoys dancing. Nordmann’s AWE classes were his first exposure to making art himself but he’s patient with it. Like Confucius advised, he said, I’m trying to “discover beauty in everything.”

Sr. Marie Casattas

Sister Julie has been a nun with the Sisters of the Holy Family for 65 years. She taught kindergarten and worked with families in California and Nevada. A lover of music, Sister Julie has enjoyed singing and playing “semi-classical” and gospel music. She began painting and exhibiting with the AWE program a few years ago.  In her AWE classes, she likes drawing flowers, sunsets, and animals in pastel chalk. “You gotta keep moving and try something different,” she advises.

Sr. Andrea Rangel

Sister Andrea Rangel was born in California, where her family settled after emigrating from Mexico. She  entered the convent at the age of 25.  Sister Andrea has always felt most enriched when surrounded by people from diverse cultures, and has had a lifelong appreciation for art. She was thrilled at the opportunity to join the AWE class at On Lok Peralta, “Every painting is a surprise. Sometimes I’ll make a mistake and think that the piece isn’t going to work, but then I’ll look at the completed work and say to myself “not bad” and feel proud that I created it.” As for words of wisdom, Sister Andrea had this to say, “Acquire a hobby early in life. Stay active and creative.”

Anita Arora

Field of Flowers

Vanita Shah

Vanita was born in India and moved to the U.S. later in life to be close to her four children and seven grandchildren. She loves to cook Indian dishes for her family. Vanita, who describes herself as a very good-natured person, feels that education is important and appreciates her AWE class. Her art teacher Dmitry says that she specializes in folk art and reports that, with her attention to details, her drawings take months to finish.

Mountains

Dmitry Grudsky
AWE Artist Instructor

Working for many years in Eldergivers organization I established warm and trustful relationship with our residents. Having art classes on regular basis I am always looking forward to see my students and I am sure they were anticipating to see me as well. It was well maintained organized smooth process of learning art skills, practicing, exchanging news and just socializing in the class room. Since COVID19 epidemic struck in March we all had to change our social commitments. In order to be safe all Art With Elders in person classes were cancelled. Virtual art lessons is one of the forms available to continue our program. With the support of On Lok administration and activity directors we are restarting our classes. So far it is a small group of seniors participating but I hope that more residents will adapt new technological task and feel comfortable in online classes.

On Lok Gee Center and Mission Plaza Apartments with Min

Li Bang Chen

Pei Wan Huang

Tunde Zwerencz

Tunde was born in Hungary and came to the U.S in 1992. She was as a social worker, she loves to help people and loves to learn. Tunde was inspired by her father who was a famous Fine Artist in Hungary. Tunde says, “Creating arts can calm me down, help me to focus, forget and ease my physical pains. Attending Art with Elders class helped me a lot. I am living very happily now!” Tunde’s also advises: “Making art is not easy but don’t give up, take step by step and be persistent to practice.”

Irish Higgins

A multi-talented performer, Irish led a blues band in San Francisco, and has worked with a local theater group. She has studied several languages and used her academic skills to empower learners at City College of San Francisco and Visitacion Valley Middle School. She continues along the creative path experimenting with watercolors, acrylics, oil paints, and ceramics at the San Francisco Senior Center.

Zhi Wen Luo

Born in Guangzhou, Canton province in 1930, Zhiwen came from a traditional Chinese family that emphasized the importance of doing one’s best and being humble and quiet. Zhiwen married and raised her children (one son and two daughters) while working full-time in a chemical factory. She and her husband came to the U.S. over twenty years ago to be with a daughter and three grandchildren who live in South San Francisco. Doing calligraphy is like practicing music, she says—it demands perfection and patience. She continues striving for perfection in her art, working at home outside of art class, and advises: “Be serious in anything you do.”

Sandy Fong

Born in China, Sandy came to the U.S. in 1969 and has three children as well as a granddaughter. Her happiest moments in life were the births of her children and grandchild. Her family, including her granddaughter, appreciates and encourages Sandy’s new interest in art, something she never thought she would be doing. Her main medium is watercolor. Her teacher points out that all Sandy’s art has the feel of a Chinese brush painting, with its harmonizing colors. Her art, she says, reflects her calm personality.

Pearl Pooner

Pearl grew up in San Francisco and took art at City College. After raising a family, she began painting again. During her recovery from severe health problems, including one month in a coma, Pearl slowly regained control of her fingers by drawing shapes. Circles at first, then triangles and finally her toy dog. Much of work she is creating now is inspired by the dreams she had while in the hospital.


Casa de Esperanza in the City of Mexico

Concepcion Calantoc

Chen Ying Shao

Min Lee
AWE Artist Instructor

The Reutlinger Community with Betty Rothaus

Evelyne Ostreicher

When I was a kid, my first experience in a synagogue was being in the upstairs sanctuary of a house in Ohio. Over the years, I have been a member in synagogues in Ohio, Vegas, Walnut Creek, and Danville and have visited them all over the world in my travels and in books. One  day, it came to me that I’ve never heard of a synagogue in the forest!  So, I thought, what if I create one? I would certainly like to go, and I think others would also, whether reform, conservative or orthodox. More and more I dreamt of this synagogue, “Beit Or: House of Light” and now I have the artistic tools to create it!  It makes me feel good that I can make this, visit it and share it with the world!     

Beit or: House of Light

Doris Langer

One day in the art room, I was looking at a book on butterflies and saw some of the  wings  had been photographed under a microscope.  The colors were so beautiful, they inspired me to fly! These miraculous wings also inspired a series I have been working on for over a year- on flight! In this painting “In Flight”, I see butterflies taking off in the sky-at night in the darkness.  When I make these brushstrokes, the movement of my arm feels like flying!  The paint is shimmering like the movement of their wings.  For me, its all about color and movement.  When I create something I like, it makes me happy.


In Flight

Bess Meek

This seems like a mystical woods. It’s interesting, when I look at it I feel it is wild and noisy!

It also brings up the question- “Why am I here?” I would like to know what other people see and feel when they are “Walking in the Mystic Woods”?

Walking in the Mystic Woods II

Sidney Glickfeld

The heavenly body seen in this painting is part of our solar system! Since the beginning of human history and before, It has provided us with a form of starlight in our late afternoons. “Starlight, Starbright”, is in primitive Yosemite, probably a thousand years ago.  This was the home of Native Americans, who practiced conserving the land. They revered nature as holy.  This is a practical approach to (conserving) our place in the universe.

Starlight, Starbright

Marjorie Cohen

I began “Fog on the Mountainside” last November,  but ran into a medical problem which took me away from working for several months. It was much harder to start up again, since, the skills I had learned were no longer fresh in my mind.    However, with time, practice and patience, I regained my ability to follow the process, interpret the colors and do what I set out to do. Originally , I was very attracted to the subtlety and softness of the colors in this scene.  I liked the mix of blues, grays and yellow nearby in the sky and in the reflections.   After finding a title for the painting, I more clearly realized its true subject.  I went back into it and emphasized the fog with paint and water. I accomplished painting this picture as I envisioned it!

Fog on the Mountainside

Maher Salama

I am a man of faith.

I have learned the technique of painting late in my life through much guidance. I never expected to learn to draw and paint such beauty in G-d’s creation for generations to admire! I did it for people to enjoy.

When I start the day and look at the sky and see the beauty of heavenly creation,  I open my eyes with life and happiness. Love peace on earth. G-d bless you always and forever.
Amen.

God’s Creation: Morning Drizzle

Joan Gill

          This is happening !!!   …and I thought “ it’s so good!!!

 …and all the shapes are getting along!”  

       Joan Gill
 

Circle Round

Rita R. Goldman

This prima ballerina is taking a bow after her performance!  Her troupe mates look on with admiration at her skill, and are tinged with envy at her position in the spotlight. They are also hopeful for their own future success knowing the work and effort required to achieve that kind of joy in the dance and the artistic success it brings. They have to dance because its a gift they’ve been given. As artists, they feel a responsibility to develop their G-d given gift.

The Prima Ballerina Takes a Bow        

Robert DeMatheis

“Forest Spring”  broadened my perspective of distances.

Through painting the faint mist of the background, the solidness of the cliffs in the middle ground and high contrasts of the forest in the foreground, I created the illusion of space!

After painting this, the brightness and the colors reminded me of springtime.

Forest Spring

Betty Rothaus
AWE Artist Instructor

Remember to Remember who you are and where you are. The Master of the Good Name taught: there is a river of pure Love that flows through the universe…connecting all people, places and things. We may …“draw power from this stream of blessing at any time. All that is required is to pause and remember it’s always there.”* The problem is that we forget. We are very “busy.” Each day, thousands of thoughts and feelings anchored in the past or future prevent us from being present. They prevent us from enjoying beauty, distract us from loving ourselves, and others and from seeing and appreciating the richness and magic surrounding us. Being aware of who we are, where we are, in the present, we can fully live the precious moments of our lives. My mission is to remind us to be present – to our gifts and blessings – and to celebrate daily with joy and gratitude.
*Ani Tuzman

Dwight’s Vision

Mission Neighborhood Centers and The Friday Group with Santiago

Adelaida Moreno

Originally from El Salvador. I arrived in the United States of America in 2001. I joined the Senior Center between 19th street and Capp in which I am still an active member. I feel we have a family like connection at the center. I thank God that despite the situation in which we are living right now, Mrs. Aurora Alvarado and Joana Mattero in the company of Mrs. Maria Campos and Claudia Perez-Vaughan worked very hard in provides us with virtual classes in which all classes are excellent. “The painting” class, exercises, well each one are excellent. The ones where I participate help me to be less worried about how much time I have to be in quarantine and I am very grateful for their dedication, their patience to us. Thank you very much.

La Ermita de Mi Barrio –
My Neighborhood’s Hermitage

Esperanza Salazar

I am originally from El Salvador. I am very grateful and happy at the same time for the new thing they have decided to do for us at the Capp Mission Neighborhood Center. What happiness! Being able to communicate virtually with all our colleagues and friends. I remember that before the shelter in place was ordered we all enjoyed all the activities and going to the center. Lately I feel very good, surprised, happy again at different times, triumphing with technology. I am very happy because every day of the week we receive different classes, such as exercises, guitar, Tai chi, Latin dance, psychology, and drawing. I like the art class a lot because I can express and give life to many of my ideas that I have. Thank you very much.


Paseando –  Strolling Around

Maria Esperanza Flores

Since March, our lives have changed, we have to be at home protecting ourselves from this COVID-19 pandemic for being more vulnerable, but these things always come in addition. We are united with the Capp center (MNC); we have realized how important teachers are, like our Art teacher Santiago who show us videos of famous Artist. We are entertained drawing, coloring, reviewing our drawings and we are very happy for this class. They have given us materials for us to work on, such as drawing pages, they have lent us color pencils and also tablets and the internet. Thanks for everything, I love you, God bless you.

Haitiana – Haitian

Rosario Martinez

I am originally from El Salvador; I arrived in San Francisco 43 years ago. I am 73 years old. My first job was at Mission Neighborhood Center; I worked 30 years and went to work at LHH and SFGH Hospital and Clinica De La Raza in Oakland. Now I have visited MNC again for the services rendered to the community. The art class on Saturdays made me remember when I was going to school. I like to draw. Now with the teacher Santiago Gervasi I have learned again. I am very grateful that this class helped me while we are shelter in place. It has helped me a lot to use my mind and develop my skills. I thank the teacher and MNC very much for taking an interest on my well-being. I want to add something else, Mr. Santiago Ruiz was the director when I worked there and when I told him that I was leaving he said, “If you don’t like the new job or need to come back; you are very welcome.” and he is still the director now. Thank God and you for making life easier and more reliable.


Fruta Fresca

Ana Miranda

Hello, my name is Ana Miranda. I am an active participant in the classes offered through Mission Neighborhood Centers Inc. I greatly appreciate these classes as I am learning so many new things. I have always loved and enjoyed to draw. In the Art class, I have learned many more skills on how to use colors and how to combine them. Our teacher Santiago Gervasi is very knowledgeable and a joy to learn more and more skills from him. I feel very blessed to be able to participate in this class.


Gato en la Ventana
Cat at the Window

Concepcion Ruiz

My name is Concepción Ruiz, I was born in Mexico. I have been living here in the United States for many years. A friend invited me to go to the Mission Neighborhood Centers about four years ago or more.

Before I went to another center, they are all very nice, but when I started coming to this one I decided to stay here because I met many very friendly people and the staff who works here at the center always look for programs and services for our benefits.

Now that we cannot leave because of COVID-19, we take classes virtually, especially the art class. That class has help me a lot, since I starting participating on it, I am able to cope with everything is going on and relieve my stress.

Thanks Aurora, Joana, Claudia and Maria. Thank you very much for thinking of us older adults.


Dia Bonito – Beautiful Day

 Ana Zavaleta

My name is Ana Zavaleta. I am from El Salvador. I am 24 years old. I began confinement on March 13, 2020. We had to stock up on food, water, medicine for 3 months.

I thank the Senior Center Mission Neighborhood Centers for the support they have given me with virtual classes that are giving us.

These are difficult times and I want all this to pass so that we can meet again and give my friends a hug.


Bubbles

Hilda Ibarra

My name is Hilda.  I am a participant at Mission Neighborhood Centers drawing class. During the COVID-19, pandemic virtual classes have been taking place and I had been fortunate enough to had been able to borrow a tablet and internet hotspot so I can participate in virtual classes. The center also provided me with materials for drawing and painting delivered to my home by a Staff member. Drawing class has brought me out of this mental exhaustion over the stay at home order. I am a wheelchair bound and got hurt during the pandemic so I spend most of my time in bed. After the first class, I got in a better mood and got more active. I feel liberated and capable of doing more again. I stepped out of the boundaries by using color pencil and started painting too. I am a beginner, by participate in this class and seen others art and knowledge inspired me to learn more. I have been researching and learning from internet as well. I had been able to try materials in a more freely approaching into learning and just go for it. I am originally from Mexico, opportunities to learn art are very limited specially if you do not have the funds to support the cost. I very thankful to the center for proving this huge opportunity especially during this worldwide crisis. This virtual class has not only proving me the opportunity to come out of isolation but also to improve my health. On the plus side, beside been able to participate in class I can also be part of a community again even from home. I look forward to hear and see what other members of the class have to share two times a week. Thank you very much to all the staff at the center for all your help, efforts and encouragement above your daily duties and for stepping out of the box during this stressful and difficult times. You had given hope to us even from distance.  We see some of you briefly during classes because you are so busy taking care of so many things and others so we can be able to get some peace at home. Mil gracias. May you receive more. Take care, Hilda I.

Owl

Blanca Lorena Pérez

My name is Lorena Pérez. I am from Nicaragua. I am 66 years old. I have some diseases, which is why I am a person at high risk of contracting the COVID-19 virus, and that is why I have had to spend these months of prevention at home. Despite the above, I am happy to receive the art class with Santiago Gervasi, which is a great help to overcome confinement, because in addition to instructing me in the subject of art, I learn drawing and we had a lot of fun sharing with the other students. I thank Santiago for showing us videos of Latin American painters and from other parts such as Spain, France, USA, etc. The Mission Neighborhood Centers had great success in coordinating the virtual classes. Thank you very much for this great work on behalf of older adults like me.


Cats

Tomás Lopez

My name Tomás Lopez, I am from Mexico. I am 67 years old. During this quarantine, sometimes I feel sad and desperate because I cannot see my colleagues at the center and attend classes. Now that I can attend virtual art classes with Santiago Gervasi, it gives me joy, and pleasure to see other people participating. I forget that I cannot go out because of COVID-19. The Art class helps me to relax; it is a therapy to me. I can relieve the stress I have for not being able to do the things I used to do before the pandemic. Thanks to this and the other virtual classes, they help me cope with the shelter in place order.


Huerta

Carlos Pérez

My name is Carlos Pérez. I was born in Guatemala. I am 74 years old.

I want to share through this testimony how much these virtual art classes have helped me. I like how teacher Santiago Gervasi gives his classes, which on the other hand are the first art classes I ever received.

The unfortunate times that we have to live in have been more bearable because of the class, which I am grateful for and I hope they continue to teach it.


Cosas

Blanca Marenco

My name is Blanca Marenco. I was born in Guatemala. I came to the United States almost 55 years ago. I have two children, a boy, a girl, and five grandchildren.

I have been enjoying taking the art classes with Santiago Gervasi.  They have help me to relax now that I have to be home because of the pandemic.


Las Ardillas Felices

Bonnie Perez

My name is Bonnie M. Perez. I was born in El Salvador. I am 73 years old.   I am writing these words to express how much the virtual art classes have help me and continue to help me. Taught by teacher Santiago Gervasi in this time of quarantine by the Corona Virus. I hope that these classes continue to keep me active and to keep my mind working during my golden years.

 

Abstracto – Abstract

Frank Grober

Peggy Wilson


Masks We Wear

Santiago Gervasi
AWE Artist Instructor

Santiago Gervasi was born in Lima, Perú. He moved to the San Francisco Bay Area in the early 80s, where he has been residing ever since. Gervasi received a BFA from the San Francisco Art Institute and an MFA from the California College of Arts and Crafts. Gervasi has shown his work extensively both nationally and internationally. The galleries that have represented his work include Olga Dollar (S.F., CA) SFMOMA Artists Gallery (S.F. CA), Cervini-Haas Gallery (Scottsdale, AZ) and Bay Area Visual Arts Network (Oakland, CA). His work has been reviewed in Art Week magazine, and has been featured in the TV show “Latin Eyes.”


Embudo – Funnel

Laguna Honda Hospital with Mark

Max Davidson

I’ve been an artist in one way or another for as long as I remember. I try everything in terms of media. I have worked a lot in gouache as a designer, but now I’m interested in exploring new and different techniques. I was actually surprised to discover how much the program has fundamentally reinvigorated and sustained my quality of life. Those conducting the classes are not just art instructors, but in a way, creative guides, encouraging students to think and not be told how to express themselves. The program also offers opportunities to support fellow students and facilitates constructive exchanges of creative insights and encouragement. Expression through art is a great leveler. Everyone’s work has real merit. The possibility of great art is as likely here in these small classes as in the most rarified circles. It’s a great honor to be included in the show.

Mark Campbell
AWE Executive Director and Artist Instructor

In addition to being a renowned Fine Artist whose work is widely collected by individuals and museums, Mark also has been part of Art With Elders for 25 years. He currently serves as AWE Executive Director and also as Program Director of AWE at Laguna Honda Hospital.


Monk

Lytton Gardens with Sarah

Louise Gibler

Louise has lived a life “centered in art.” Born in New Jersey, she and her husband Dick met when they were both working for a Superior Court judge. Dick was a landscape painter and she began painting with him, often taking their easels and oils outside to paint together. While living in New Jersey, they began attending classes at the well known Arts Students League in New York at the time when Jackson Pollock and Georgia O’Keeffe were there. The couple worked and painted together until Dick’s death at the age of 75. She moved to Canada near Toronto where her son was living and joined an art community. “Art,” she says, “saved my life.”

Sarah Dwyer
AWE Artist Instructor

The Carlisle with Yvette

Anne Swinehart

Professionally, I was a caseworker. I spent many years at the National Council Institute in Bethesda, Maryland. Later, during my move and marriage, I became an enthusiastic third grade teacher, loving the busy pace of the classroom and achieving some recognition for excellence. I’ve never painted before these past six months. I have done pencil and pen sketches, mostly of people. Now I seem to prefer to work with acrylic, but want to experiment with watercolors sometime in the future. I like to use images that appeal to me, but I don’t usually strive to copy them. I use those images to fire my imagination.  I will be 95 years old soon and feel blessed to learn new things, including painting!

Aurora Spikol

Aurora started taking art classes in the evening when she was still working. She was an active member of the Art Society at the World Bank (where she worked in Washington, D.C.) which held annual art exhibits and she had continued to participate even after her retirement. She had participated annually at the Glen Echo Park Labor Day Exhibits in Maryland, and also with other local community centers while residing in D.C. When she moved to San Francisco in 2011, Aurora took classes in Drawing and Watercolor painting for two years at the Sharon Art Studio at the Golden Gate Park in San Francisco. She uses the different media although she prefers oil and watercolor. “I’m enjoying painting very much. I never knew that art painting would be part of my life. The more I paint, the more I discover myself. I am always challenged but at the end, I feel happy to see my work.”


Tranquility

Deborah Solomon

“I like paintings landscapes, fishes, things under the sea, in the air. Wherever I want to go, I go”, says Deborah Solomon, affectionately known as Debs. Born in New York City in 1954, Debs survived a traumatic head injury when she was 11. During a long and difficult rehabilitation to relearn how to speak, New York’s renowned museums became a surrogate for school, which led to a lasting love of art. In 1982, Debs began studying painting at the National Academy of Arts in Manhattan. “You’ll always see what you’re doing if you go on and paint naturally, don’t hold back. Your hand knows more than you do. I might think my hand and my mind don’t agree. Well, we do agree!” she laughs. Debs was the longest-serving volunteer at the Central Park Conservancy, where she weeded and pruned for 25 years until she and her father moved to San Francisco eleven years ago. As an adult, she was diagnosed with ovarian cancer. “I was sad, I thought I couldn’t do it, but then I thought, ‘I will do it again,’ and slowly and surely I did. Always think of hope and go on.”


Mountains and Sheep

Leatrice Weiss

 I went to the High School of Music & Art, now called La Guardia High School. I was an art major there, where I also became the theater editor of the school paper. I have always had a fondness for theater (probably developing this fondness from my mother who enjoyed performing as well); my earliest memory of performing on stage was at three years old. I have always been a creative person, enjoying art, music and theater very much. As a camper and camp counselor during my teenage years, I wrote several musicals – and acted in them – continuing my love for theater performance as an adult in Paramus, New Jersey. Throughout my adulthood, I have painted more as a hobby. As an adult I also wrote several children’s books for which my daughter did the illustrations. I usually like working with any acrylic or watercolor but find that acrylic tend to be more forgiving.


Road Trip

Robert Nelson

I first started painting as a young adult while recovering from a serious illness. I worked primarily in oils, painting landscapes I found in National Geographic magazine. However, after a short time, I learned that oil paints and a houseful of young children were not compatible, and I put it aside for many years. When my wife and I retired we moved to Marco Island, Florida, where I became interested in painting again and took a series of excellent watercolor classes at the Marco Island Art League. I also joined a Plein Air group which met weekly at pre-determined sites. Once a month we held instructive critiques of each others work, which helped me develop my technique and I was encouraged to enter my paintings in juried art shows where I had some success. Lately, I’ve become interested in oils again and have been teaching myself how to work in this medium.


Restless Sea

Jayne
Ross-Matsuda

Sure that she was destined for a more-than-average life, Jayne Ross-Matsuda fled her childhood base in New Jersey for New York City as soon as she could. Her father was willing to pay only for post-high school courses that would provide “practical skills”. At a local business college she became acquainted with the PBX switchboard system, and soon after found a job in New York City, utilizing that skill. Working for a Manhattan-based tin broker infused Jayne with a fascination for business which ultimately landed her in upper management at CBS. Following retirement, Jayne took acting classes which opened another career. She has performed off Broadway, in regional theatre, has had a number of commercials in her acting portfolio and has worked in radio drama, television and film, appearing in several episodes of Law & Order. By her own admission, Jayne has had a long-time but erratic interest in the visual arts. It has only been at The Carlisle, in the Art With Elders class, that she has found teachers who can instill the discipline required to learn the skills that result in a deeply satisfying art practice.

Mary’s Tiger

Yvette Brown
AWE Artist Instructor

“My work is about the deep psychological and physical responses people have to motion. I create images that tap into the rich vein that lies between our dreams of flying and our nightmares of falling out of control.” My paintings hover somewhere along the invisible line of tension between awkwardness and grace. I strive to capture the frozen moment in which balance is either lost or regained. I tend to avoid faces because they give too much away. I want to leave more for the viewer to interpret. Is a figure filled with the elation of soaring? Or is there a violence bubbling just beneath the veneer of beauty? What are those secrets behind the beauty? It all depends on what we bring of ourselves to the viewing.


Logan

Pandemic Response Art

THEY HAVE NAMES

Susan McCown

Living with Uncertainty

Fran Marcus

Covid-19 Quilt

Shirley Keller

Let There Be Peace

Mary Ann Taylor

Pandemic Eyes

Kay Talbot

COVID 19

Chelsea Lee

COVID-19

Pamela Osborne

COVID 19

Kay Talbot