TUCSON, Ariz. (April 5, 2010) — A drawing by artist Kaalan Wilson of Houston 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.
This is Wilson’s first work accepted into the Collection. Titled “Super K,” the mixed pencil, crayon and felt marker drawing depicts a gallant caped crusader with masked features standing high on a rocky prominence above a city, presumably waiting to perform heroic deeds. A large letter K on the character’s chest may reflect 14-year-old Kaalan’s own heroic aspirations.
Kaalan has Duchenne muscular dystrophy, a progressive genetic disease that causes generalized weakness and muscle atrophy, first affecting the muscles of the hips, pelvic area, thighs and shoulders. He uses a power wheelchair for mobility.
The artist, a freshman at Dekaney High School in Houston, has been drawing since he was 8 years old. In addition to drawing, he is a serious video games player.
“We’re honored to welcome Kaalan Wilson’s work into the permanent MDA Art Collection,” MDA President & CEO Gerald Weinberg said. “His contribution to our Collection undoubtedly will delight all who see it as it travels to galleries and museums as part of the Collection’s special exhibits.”
The new addition by Wilson 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 370 works (Wilson’s is the latest) 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; Chicago Public Library; Fort Lauderdale Museum of Art; Los Angeles Children's Museum; Capital Children's Museum, Washington; 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.