TUCSON, Ariz. (April 5, 2010) — A painting by artist Carlos Serbia of Bethel, Conn., has been accepted into the Muscular Dystrophy Association’s Art Collection. Now in its 18th year, the Collection features artwork by people from across the country with muscular dystrophy and related diseases.
“In the Zone” is Serbia’s first piece to be accepted into the Collection. He said the vibrant abstract acrylic painting, like his other works, was “inspired by the lush colors and fresh spirit breezes of the Caribbean, the complexity of the female form and the struggles and desires of human personality.
In the Zone
“‘In the Zone’ was inspired by feelings of confidence and self-control,” Serbia said. “As I listened to rock and roll, the aspects of the painting came to life for me, suggestive of coming out of a rough situation and being victorious in the end.”
Serbia, 44, has been diagnosed with Becker muscular dystrophy, a progressive genetic disease characterized by generalized weakness and atrophy that begins in the muscles of the hips, pelvic area, thighs and shoulders. He walks with difficulty.
Serbia earned college degrees in business administration and computer information systems and has been painting professionally since 2007. As a child, he pursued art studies at the Liga de Arte de San Juan in Puerto Rico, although he is mostly self-taught. He is also a musician and poet.
Amano Chocolate, an award-winning manufacturer of fine chocolate, licenses one of Serbia’s paintings in the packaging of its Ocumare Grand Dark Chocolate. In 2009, one of his paintings was used to advertise the New Milford Outdoor Art Festival in Connecticut. His work also was exhibited at the Joseph Ferris Gallery in Bethel from December 2009 through January of this year.
Some of his work can be seen and purchased from his online gallery: http://www.carlosserbia.com/.
For his outstanding achievements in art and his success in overcoming the challenge of neuromuscular disease, Serbia was honored with a Robert Ross MDA Personal Achievement Award in 2008.
“We’re pleased to welcome Carlos Serbia’s work into the permanent MDA Art Collection,” MDA President & CEO Gerald Weinberg said. “There’s no doubt that ‘In the Zone’ will inspire many who see it as it travels to galleries and museums as part of the Collection’s special exhibits.”
The new addition by Serbia is on display at MDA’s national headquarters in Tucson, Ariz., and can be seen at www.mda.org/community-programs/art-collection.
The 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 Collection now comprises more than 370 works by artists aged 2 to 82, representing all 50 states. Each artist is affected by one of the more than 40 diseases in MDA’s program.
Selected art from the Collection has been exhibited at the Dallas Museum of Art; Cork Gallery at Lincoln Center and the Forbes Collection in New York City; Chicago Public Library; Fort Lauderdale Museum of Art; Los Angeles Children's Museum; Capital Children's Museum, Washington, D.C.; and many other sites.
MDA is the nonprofit health agency dedicated to curing muscular dystrophy, ALS and related diseases by funding worldwide research. The Association also provides comprehensive health care and support services, advocacy and education.