Art may know no boundaries, but it’s met some obstacles. These obstacles are often in the form of external discouragement, sometimes coupled with lack of opportunity. Too many artists are hindered by barriers such as physical or mental impairment, poverty and other struggles.
Art Enables works to bring an end to this injustice. This nonprofit, in its 16th year, provides space, materials and assistance with marketing to budding artists with disabilities. These may include mental health challenges, genetic disorders, and developmental and cognitive issues.
The goal of Art Enables is to help artists with disabilities succeed at showing and selling their art. The pride and satisfaction that comes from selling their first piece is often just the motivation these artists need to jump-start a successful career.
“I like the people that surround me…the people that inspire me,” said Vanessa Monroe, an Art Enables resident artist in a WETA Arts video.
The organization also holds creative workshops on the second Saturday of each month that are free and open to the public. I will be running the next workshop, Get Wired With Craig Meklir, where I will teach wire sculpting skills. I look forward to helping participants of all ages create art with sculpture wire. This workshop will be held from 1 to 4 p.m. Saturday, May 13. More details are at Art Enables’ Facebook page.
To see the amazing works of some of Art Enables’ featured artists, visit the Dennis and Phillip Ratner Museum, at 10001 Old Georgetown Rd, Bethesda, MD; opening this Sunday May 1st through June, with a formal opening on May 21st from 1 to 3 p.m. The museum is open Monday through Thursday, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. and Sundays, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.