Many seniors may feel as though they can barely draw a stick figure or that it is too late to take up a new interest, especially something that may be as intimidating as art.
However, research and results show that art programs for seniors prove otherwise.
Some of the benefits of art for seniors include elevating one’s mood, self-expression and continued learning. You can say it is therapeutic.
The Ageless Art senior outreach program is a new partnership between the Art Museum of South Texas and the Corpus Christi Parks and Recreation Senior Community Services Program.
“It comes from a grant from Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi, a grant to impact the community outside of the campus. I love that we are doing that, reaching out and getting connected with things that are important, not just art, but art that has education behind it. We are talking things like color, texture, and the foundation of art,” said art educator Rachel Payne.
The majority of seniors can reap great benefits from engaging in different art forms, and some may improve their quality of life through doing art, and taking part in artistic activities and engaging in therapeutic processes with art that are both valuable but in unique ways.
“This is something that they have control of, and it is a great way to express themselves,” said Payne.
“When I leave here, it is very therapeutic. The stress is relieved, you have your mind on something else, and the rest of the week looking forward to what the next project we are going to work on,” said art student Dina Salazar.
Not only is art a creative outlet for seniors, but it can also help with memory retention and serve as occupational therapy.
“I have this one person that comes to class sometimes, and she had a stroke, and when we went to do one of the activities, it really was occupational therapy for her. It took her a little time to do it, but at the end, she was so proud of herself and what she had accomplished, and made me feel good that we offer that to her,” said Payne.
This new program connects individuals ages 50 and above with free weekly hands-on art instruction by the Art Museum of South Texas at eight Senior Community Centers over eight consecutive weeks.
The first series of Ageless Art! workshops scheduled this fall are at three Corpus Christi Senior Community Centers: Garden, Broadmoor Park, and Northwest.
Dates, times, and locations vary to accommodate both working and retired adults.
Stay tuned for Spring 2019 dates and locations at five additional Senior Community Centers which will be announced later this year.