1. What is the purpose of the MDA Art Collection?
The MDA Art Collection was established in 1992 to focus attention on the creative abilities and accomplishments of individuals with disabilities. The Collection includes the work of adult artists and art created by children in MDA-sponsored workshops and summer camps nationwide. Each of the artists is affected by one of the neuromuscular disorders in MDA's program.
2. How many pieces does the Collection contain, which states are represented, etc.?
|Total works (to date):||400|
|Individual works by children:||124|
|Group projects by children:||12|
|Individual works by adults:||264|
|Ages of artists:||2 to 84 years|
|States represented:||50 plus the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico|
|Media:||Ranges from watercolors, oils and bronzes to digital media, photography and paint applied with wheelchair wheels, hands and feet|
3. Where does MDA hold art collection exhibits?
Selected works from the MDA Art Collection have been exhibited at the Dallas Museum of Art; Cork Gallery at Lincoln Center and Forbes Collection, New York; Tucson Museum of Art; Bishop Museum, Honolulu; Chicago Public Library, Harold Washington Center; Fort Lauderdale Museum of Art; Los Angeles Children’s Museum; Blackhawk Museum, Danville, Calif.; Fresno Metropolitan Museum; JFK Center at Vanderbilt University, Nashville, Tenn.; Duluth Art Institute; Capital Children's Museum, Washington, D.C.; and the Henry Ford Centennial Library, Dearborn, Mich. The Collection is on permanent display at MDA's national headquarters in Tucson.
4. Has MDA held children's art workshops?
MDA sponsored more than 40 art workshops for children. These include workshops at the Art Institute of Chicago; Arizona State University; Detroit Institute of Art; Indianapolis Children's Museum; Boston Museum of Fine Arts; Scripps Institute in La Jolla, Calif.; and the National Museum of American Art, Smithsonian Institution, Washington, D.C. MDA-sponsored art workshops have been led by such world renowned individuals as ocean artist Wyland and 3D artist Charles Fazzino.
5. When was the MDA Art Collection created and what makes it distinct?
The Muscular Dystrophy Association Art Collection was established in 1992 to focus attention on the achievements of artists with disabilities and to emphasize that physical disability is no barrier to creativity.
The MDA Art Collection is one of the most varied collections in the nation. The versatility attests to the imagination and talent of the artists. The Collection features unusual artistic media, from digital designs to collages with corn, to paint applied with wheelchair wheels and human feet. There are also many works in more traditional oils, watercolors, acrylics, pen and ink, crayons, pastels, bronze, ceramics and photography. Subject matter ranges from self-portraits to landscapes, and from still lifes to outer space fantasies.
In addition to showcasing the work of talented artists who are affected by muscle diseases, the Collection allows the artists to articulate their distinctive vision of living with a disability.
6. How does the Art Collection empower people served by MDA?
Society has, in general, underestimated the capabilities of people with disabilities. For decades, most Americans with disabilities too often have been viewed as incapable of working, caring for themselves, or making contributions to their families and their communities. Today, there continues to be growing recognition that people with disabilities are accomplished, capable, creative individuals who can participate fully in mainstream American society.
The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) continues to break down barriers for people with disabilities, especially in employment, education, transportation and accommodations. The ADA also has accelerated the transition in national attitudes and actions toward those with disabilities.
In this environment of positive change, the MDA Art Collection sends a vital message: Physical disability doesn't diminish creativity.
The MDA Art Collection offers artists with disabilities the opportunity for self-actualization through the creative process. It proves that the arts can help build bridges of understanding and acceptance.
7. Who are the artists featured in the Collection?
Since the arrival of the Collection's first piece in August 1992, the permanent Collection has grown to encompass works created and donated by artists ages 2 to 84, representing all 50 states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico. Each artist is affected by one of the muscle diseases in MDA's program.
Adult Artists: Adult artists donated their work to the MDA Art Collection. These artists range from creative amateurs, some of whom only discovered their talent after their neuromuscular disorders were diagnosed, to award-winning professional artists who have works hanging in major museums, galleries and private collections worldwide.
Young Artists and MDA-Sponsored Workshops: Children's art was either individually created and donated, or produced at MDA summer camps and MDA-sponsored art workshops. MDA organized and/or sponsored some 40 children's art workshops in conjunction with fine arts museums and galleries nationwide, including programs at the Art Institute of Chicago, Arizona State University, Detroit Institute of Art, Indianapolis Children's Museum, Boston Museum of Fine Arts, Scripps Institute in La Jolla, Calif., and the National Museum of American Art, Smithsonian Institution, Washington, D.C.
Led by professional artists and art educators who volunteered their time, the workshops were typically attended by eight to 12 children and emphasized the basics of art, including scale, color, texture and composition. Each child in the workshop received a certificate of participation, and selected pieces were considered for inclusion in the permanent MDA Art Collection. Some 1,000 children participated in these educational programs.
8. How can I support the MDA Art Collection?
The Muscular Dystrophy Association welcomes your support of its Art Collection and its programs of worldwide research, comprehensive services, advocacy and public health education. The Association's programs are funded almost entirely by individual private contributors and cooperating organizations. Contributions to MDA, a nonprofit health agency, are tax deductible.
For more information about sponsorship of the MDA Art Collection or to learn more about the Collection in general, please contact:
MDA Art Collection
Muscular Dystrophy Association
3300 East Sunrise Drive
Tucson, AZ 85718-3299