Creating art to help overcome dementia, Alzheimer's disease

- A very special art event is taking place at the Silverado Cypresswood Memory Care Community. Residents at the center who have Alzheimer’s have created works of art to auction off this week. Sales from the works of art will benefit the Houston chapter of the Alzheimer’s Association.

The Nexus Program at the community created the Heart of Silverado auction that is scheduled to take place on Friday.

“This is a beautiful way to help our residents reduce anxiety and depression that typically goes hand in hand with dementia,” said Gigi McCorckle, the family ambassador at the facility.

Expressions through art is based on scientific research designed to help people living with early stage dementia maintain and build cognitive ability. Residents at the community are not defined by their diagnosis with Alzheimer’s and you can see that through their works of art. The residents worked with oil on canvas, watercolors, stained glass and other mediums. Their imaginations are rescuing them from their fears.

“They’re expressing themselves,” said instructor Lynn Venier. “They're saying how they feel. They're feeling accomplished, they feel like I've done something and they're very proud of their work.”

Venier also said she knows how they feel because she too suffers from Alzheimer’s. But she said she has come a long way through her artwork over the years and was asked to instruct the residents through the program.

“What sticks with me is the emotional feeling they have when they're happy with what they're doing,” added Venier. “I feel rewarded.”

There are so many things that these residents have accomplished in their lives and now they’re adding to those accomplishments once again, inspiring others along the way.

The auction is scheduled to begin at 4 p.m. and end at 7 p.m. on Friday at Silverado Cypresswood Memory Care Community. It will be open to the public.

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