A new initiative between Oxfordshire Artweeks, Oxfordshire Arts Partnership, Day and Nightcare Assistance and Oxfordshire County Council is being set up to encourage cared-for older people and older people to take part in the visual arts: during Artweeks 2012 Day and Nightcare Assistance, an Oxfordshire-based domiciliary care provider, will host a Caring About Art exhibition to celebrating the art and craft of the older generation.
Angeli Vaid, Project Co-ordinator, Arts for Older People, at the County Council says, "Increasingly, evidence demonstrates that engagement in the arts by older people as participants, audience and commissioners contributes to improving the quality of their life, and encourages independence and well being. This because the arts provides the opportunity for self-expression which does not rely on conventional means of communication ( e.g. spoken language). Getting involved in Caring About Art is a fantastic way for older people in care homes and in the community to take part in the arts, community events and to show other people what they can do. I think it's the start of something wonderful!"
Submissions will be invited from the residents of care homes and the domiciliary care providers throughout the county in the spring and will be showcased in a Caring About Art exhibition at Danacare's Witney office next May.
John Maloney from DANAcare says, "We’re delighted to launch Caring about Art, a county-wide initiative and competition to celebrate the art and craft of the cared-for elderly. We’d like to exhibit the creative talent of an often forgotten section of Oxfordshire’s population many of whom have fascinating stories to tell. We’re inviting submissions of all shapes and sizes, things that elderly people can do either in their own homes or in a nursing or residential home setting even if their health or mobility is failing. This could be knitting, crocheting, lace work etc something the older generation did in their pas. We hope it’ll provide a focus, a good motivation for keeping mind and hands active and that the Artweeks showcase will give the exhibitors a real sense of achievement.”
To encourage all care providers to go that extra mile, there will be both an award for an individual artist or maker, and also a cash prize to their care provider to help buy equipment or other entertainment for the residents.