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I Remember Better When I Paint

Editor’s Note: As an advocate for the arts, it’s important to me that the power of the arts for healing gets the attention it deserves. I have not seen this documentary (though it is not newly released), but it was recommended to me by a fan of one of my clients. The reviews are so impressive, and the memory loss associated with Alzheimer’s is such a concern for so many, that I wanted to share it with you.

I Remember Better When I Paint, narrated by Olivia de Havilland, is the first international documentary about the positive impact of art and other creative therapies on people with Alzheimer’s and how these approaches can change the way we look at the disease. A film by Eric Ellena and Berna Huebner, presented by French Connection Films and the Hilgos Foundation. Among those who are featured are noted doctors and Yasmin Aga Khan, president of Alzheimer’s Disease International and daughter of Rita Hayworth, who had Alzheimer’s.

The Hilgos Foundation’s mission is to support and encourage the ongoing process of artistic creation with people who have memory problems and/or Alzheimer’s and who require assistance in creating art that is meaningful and enriching. The Hilgos Foundation was created in memory of Hilda Gorenstein, an accomplished painter whose career spanned 75 years. She died at age 93 and left behind her the legacy of an inspired artistic life. Choosing to call herself Hilgos, Ms. Gorenstein was known for her beautiful marine paintings, which are now in collections all over the world. She was such a skillful painter of water vessels she was chosen to paint an enormous mural depicting the history of the U.S. Navy for Chicago’s Century of Progress celebration in 1933. She completed hundreds of paintings in the last three years of her life, while she struggled with profound memory loss. The vestiges of her early, masterful renderings of waves, birds, and boats remain, but have been transformed into a new system of spontaneous, personal gestures, bordering on the abstract. The sophisticated color choices and compositions of these late works reveal how sharp her artistic eye remained up until the very end of her life.

The Hilgos Award provides student funding at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago to support and encourage the ongoing process of artistic creation. The award was established by family and friends in memory of the artist Hilgos, who studied at the Chicago Art Institute as a young woman, graduated in the 1920s, and became a well respected painter and sculptor, specializing in marine themes. Hilgos painted well into her 90’s. She returned to painting with several Art Institute students even after suffering memory loss, which almost forced her to stop painting. An award has been created in her spirit and memory at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago.

See a gallery of Hilgos’ watercolors at the Hilgos Foundation website for inspiration and hope for those who struggle with, or who are caring for a loved one who struggles with, Alzheimer’s and/or memory loss.

The website has a link to an article with fascinating insights on the connection between art and a brain failing due to Alzheimer’s, which you can access directly here:

I Remember Better When I Paint has been released as part of a DVD package which includes the documentary as well as a series of short supplemental films that further highlight special programs and flesh out the how-tos of organizing an outing, a creative workshop or recreating social bonds between people with Alzheimer’s and their families.

To buy a copy of the DVD package:

Learn more and read reviews and comments on the film’s website:

Be sure to check out the blog – this film is still touring 4 years after its initial release, and most screenings are free!

Arts & Alzheimer’s documentary to air on Oregon Public Broadcasting

The filmmakers contacted us yesterday to announce exciting news – “I Remember Better When I Paint” will  be airing on Oregon Public Broadcasting TV station on November 19, 2014 at 7 pm. Put it on your calendar so you don’t miss it, particularly if you have a friend or family member with Alzheimer’s! There is hope ~ all is not lost when there is art to step in and help with communication.

Remember Better When I Paint, narrated by Olivia de Havilland, is the first international documentary about the positive impact of art and other creative therapies on people with Alzheimer’s and how these approaches can change the way we look at the disease. Among those who are featured are noted doctors and Yasmin Aga Khan, president of Alzheimer’s Disease International and daughter of Rita Hayworth, who had Alzheimer’s.

The inspiration for the documentary was the painter Hilgos, who grew up in Portland, Oregon. In her later years while struggling with Alzheimer’s, she stated “I remember better when I paint.” With art students facilitating, Hilgos began painting again. Painting allowed Hilgos to maintain, and even regain, some of her core identity, and her extraordinary enthusiasm and energy, while living with profound memory loss.

This film, directed by Eric Ellena and Berna Huebner, is presented by French Connection Films and the Hilgos Foundation. To learn more, visit our previous post, the film’s website, and the Hilgos Foundation Wikipedia page.

Here’s a trailer:

News from Light Garden


Flowers of Hope

Artists’ Reception

at Roxy Ann Winery

was amazing!!

Great friends, good food, drink
 and lots of fun!
Thank you to everyone who came out to support the artists!
The votes are in!
Melanie Dines’
Fuchsia Panel
won the
$50 gift certificate
It was a close call between many panels
 but Melanie’s panel won by one vote.

Thank you to Brenda

and everyone at Roxy Ann

for being part of our program!

Fall Class Lineup
 Fused Glass: Dichroic Jewelry
September 27th
One Saturday Afternoon
Grab attention with beautiful dichroic glass jewelry you make yourself! Cabochons for necklaces or earrings; they all will dazzle your friends!Learn to cut them so they come out perfect every time. Compatible glass and lots of dichroic glass is included.

Make several pieces for $55

 Glass Fusing Basics

October 11th & 18th
Two Saturday Afternoons

Learn one of the fastest growing mediums in glass! In this two week class you’ll complete a 4″ tile and a small fused & slumped plate. Covers firing programs, volumn control, prepping kiln shelves and ware and much more!
All supplies are included.

 Painting with Frit

October 25th
One Saturday


Learn to use frit, hand pulled stringers and confetti to quickly add dimension and a painterly quality to your fused glass art.
Find out how easy it is to develop your sketches from photos and other inspiration. These panels can be a great reference guide for future projects.

All frit, confetti, stringers, glass and lunch are included.


Glass Fusing Basics or equivalent is required.


 Flowers of Hope Fusing Workshop

Even if you’ve never done any glass fusing before you can make an 8″ x 8″ fused panel to donate to Flowers of Hope.
$10 buys you a base piece of glass, access to all frits, stringers and noodles, hanging hardware and firing. Come in and try your hand at fusing and find out how easy and fun it can be. You’ll also be doing a wonderful thing for a woman going through a tough time.
TRY FUSING!  Workshop
The same class only you get to keep it!  Learn about using frits, stringers and noodles in this easy workshop!    $15
October   18               10am-12n
November 15              10am-12n
Is there a class listed on our website that you would like to take that isn’t scheduled yet?  Send me an email and let me know.  That’s how I know when to schedule our classes.  If you have 5-6 people we can schedule private parties.

click here to check out our classes


Need a Kiln?  Rent one of ours!


Bring in your fused work and we will fire it for you!


Projects small enough to fit on a 7″ shelf:              $   5.00

One or more projects on a 13″ round shelf:                8.00

Fuse + Slump on 13″ shelf:                                         12.00

Projects on a 20″ shelf:                                                11.00

Fused + Slump on a 20″ shelf:                                    14.00

Long Bubble Squeeze  add                                            3.00



 Morning Workshops: 

Come join our morning workshops on Wednesday and Saturday mornings from 10a – Noon.  Use our tools and workshop space.  $10 for 2 hours!  Call to reserve your space.  You can do a Flowers of Hope panel during any of our workshops…or a “Try Fusing” panel to get you started in fusing.  You can also schedule bigger projects.  Contact us for more information.

The President Presents the 2013 National Medal of Arts and National Humanities Medal

When presenting the 2013 National Medal of Arts and National Humanities in July, President Obama remarked: “The arts and humanities aren’t there to be consumed when we have a free moment. We need them like medicine. They help us live.” We couldn’t agree more!

Carole Karemera – healing social trauma through the arts

Carole Karemera – healing social trauma through the arts


“It’s a fantastic experimental place to live…”

“It was a hard wake-up call…!”

“We need to educate all of us…”

“We need to keep Rwanda as a laboratory…”

“We need to play the role of the bridge…”

I caught up with Carole Karemera during the “hellwach” (bright-awake) 6th International Theatre Festival for young audiences at the Helios Theater in Hamm, later also witnessed one of their performances of “Little Hill”, a theatre play for people from 4 years old, and recorded the after-performance talk with Carole and her team. Carol pursued a successful career as a saxophone player, film and theatre actress and contemporary dancer. She is the director and founding member of the Ishyo Art Centre in Kigale.

link to playlist 1 of interview and further intro

The main part of our conversation is dedicated to Carole’s description of the 1994 genocide in Rwanda and especially, the role that women played in the genocide. Carole then recounts for us the courageous journey of women in the arts in Rwanda, who picked up the task of listening carefully to the needs of their society and the daunting process of reworking their historical “heritage”, the social trauma of genocide together with perpetrators and victims and the new generations.

link to playlist 2 of interview and further intro

In 2005, together with eight other women, they founded a cultural initiative to respond to the needs of their country and society through arts and creative projects, beginning with storytelling in schools, later in bars. The initiative became “Ishyo Art Centre”, a vibrant cultural centre in Kigale. The centre offers space and opportunities for artists to develop and produce new work as well as a varied programme of events and workshops, which seeks to make arts and culture available for everyone.

Carole emphasizes the heightened awareness of women in the arts in Rwanda for the troubles and needs of societies elsewhere on the continent and their wish, hope and willingness to share their valuable experiences widely, and especially with their sistaz in Africa.

link to playlist of clips from Carole’s interview

link to playlist of the after-performance talk with the team of Ishyo Art Centre Kigali

imageWith this post, we are opening a new additional page of Contributions “from the far sides of the Zambezi” in our audio-library of the stories of African women. The posts will be on the blog for 10 days, then they will move to the special page of contributions with a small reference and link remaining on the front page.


Carole Karemera on the All Africa Sound Map. Contribute your recordings and place African arts and culture on the global map!

MOther's Day News from the Children's Healing Art Project


Children’s Healing Art Project
brings the healing power of art to children in crisis and their families. 
At CHAP children are known for the creative ingenuity,
not by disability, disease or diagnosis. 
(left-right) Amara, Dayle & Hania at the CHAP Studio in SE Portland
This spring CHAP joins you honoring moms.
(did you know that Mother’s Day is only 13 days away?!)
We are grateful to all the moms of the child artists we serve, grateful to the moms who teach art in the hospitals, moms who serve on our board, moms who volunteer, and moms who donate and support CHAP’s mission.
We celebrate moms like Dayle and the many amazing moms whose lives are touched by our work. Please give now in honor of Dayle and all the moms who CHAP serves.
Your donations mean that moms like Dayle, who are fighting (and beating!) cancer, can use art to play and bond with their families while in the hospital, both bedside, in family rooms and waiting rooms. 
You can provide kids like Amara and Hania beads, paint, glitter, clay, feathers, sequins, crayons and art supplies galore so they can come to Art Club, be kids, express themselves, have fun, and be a part of our community.  
CHAP would like to extend a special appreciation 
to the following funders who make our programs possible: 
Autzen Foundation * Equity Group Foundation 
Henry Lea Hillman, Jr. Foundation *Oregon Arts Commission
Oregon Jewish Community Foundation * Maybelle Clark Macdonald Fund
PGE Foundation * Regional Arts & Culture Council * Reser Family Foundation
Spirit Mountain Community Fund * Work for Art
Children’s Healing Art Project
1910 SE 11th
Portland, OR 97214
Like us on Facebook Follow us on TwitterView our videos on YouTubeFind us on Pinterest

LifeTrack Youth Center and Art Gallery Opens Tomorrow!!


LifeTrack Youth Center and Art Gallery March 1 2014 Grand Opening Announcement

CHAPpy Valentines Day!

The Children’s Healing Art Project works in southern Oregon, too! Please help support this important service, which puts art to work on behalf of hurting and dying children!

Looking for another way to help CHAP share the love and the
healing power of art?
It’s as simple as shopping at Fred Meyer.
Link your rewards card to CHAP (id # 84984) and we will receive a donation every time you shop.
 Easy as pie!

We are also excited to announce that we are the beneficiary of the
Winter Blues Festival  on February 22nd-23rd for a 3rd year in a row!!!  We are SO grateful to coordinator LeeAnn Gibbons and her team for their continued support of CHAP.
This is a fantastic music event ranging from old time Blues to contemporary Blues.
To purchase tickets or learn more about the
Follow us on Twitter

Like us on Facebook

Our first ever


JOIN US & help us make our$2500 goal
Click here for easy and secure online giving.
And click here here for an awesome video we made showcasing many of the hearts and art to be found at CHAP HQ.
Funds raised during this challenge will go to support our TEEN ART CLUB, kicking off this March.
Since we are participating in Global Giving’s Bonus Day all donations TODAY will be matched 30% up to $1000 until the funds are gone.
So give early and spread the word! We can also win a bonus $1000 if we have the most donations and/or most # of donors, so every gift counts.
A gift of any size will help cover the cost of art supplies for Teen Art Club this year. 
 Make a Valentine’s Gift  to CHAP in honor of your someone special and they will receive a tribute card.

So much love and gratitude to all of you!!!!
Roxie, Heather, Wendi, Natalia, Faye, Mary, Maxine, Carolyn, Sharon,Grace and Mike

 Children’s Healing Art Project
1910 SE 11th
Portland, OR 97214

Hope Wine, Dine and Shop Holiday Arts and Craft Sale

Flywer for Wine, Dine and Shop Holiday Event to benefit HOPE Equestrian Center

Wine, Dine and Shop Holiday Event – We hope you will attend this extraordinary art event to benefit HOPE Equestrian Center! There will be at least two members of the Southern Oregon Artists Resource there to share their beautiful art and artisan crafts – Janet Tam London and Judy Elliot

Bohemia Gallery Returns with Exhibition by Breast Cancer Survivor!

postcard-4inx6in-h-frontThe Jazz Series: Watercolors and Drawings by Jeannie Azzopardi

Rogue Frameworks is proud to announce the return of Bohemia Gallery. The gallery occupies an intimate space within Rogue Frameworks and showcases work by exceptional regional artists.

A native of the San Francisco Bay Area, Ashland resident Jeannie Azzopardi has done pen and ink illustration for years, though she never studied art formally. She began painting in March of 2011 after a diagnosis of breast cancer.

"Piano Dancer", pen and watercolor painting by Jeanne Azzopardi

“Piano Dancer” by Jeanne Azzopardi

The Jazz Series came to life following chemotherapy, 9 surgeries, the death of 3 loved ones within a 2 month period, and the end of a four year relationship due to the resulting depression. Although Jeannie holds 2 BS degrees, an MS and MDE, “Education and intelligence is, unfortunately, not a talisman against grief and despair.”

The inspiration she needed came from two Frank Roner prints found at an estate sale. She embraced the freedom and joy in Roner’s Hi-Fi Characters and began the therapeutic journey away from desperate depression.

Sax and Dogs, by Jeannie Azzopardi

Sax and Dogs, by Jeannie Azzopardi

Jeannie’s style exhibits strokes of abandon and delight that charmingly captivate the viewer. As one fan says, “I totally love this art. Your paintings make me nostalgic for a time period I never lived in.”

There will be a reception for the artist on Friday November 1st from 5 – 8 PM. Wine and hors d’oeuvres will be provided.

For more information visit or call 541-488-5227