Non-profit serving people with disabilities hosts annual art exhibition

The Whole Person, a nonprofit organization that serves people with disabilities in Kansas City, will be holding its annual Expressions Art Exhibition starting March 5.

The exhibition is entering its 11th year and features a list of 17 artists. Along with artwork showcased by the artists, there will be several live drum performances by artist Alex Fraser. 

The opening reception will be in-person at Rochester Brewing & Roasting Co. from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m., and attendees will be expected to follow all COVID-19 guidelines. It will also be streamed live on Facebook and Instagram for the first 10 minutes of every hour from 12 to 6 p.m. 

Distance by Jasmine Ali

“Doing the art helps me be creative. It’s helped my mental stability, emotional stability,” artist Sherri Buerky said in a video promoting the event. “I really like being able to create and share it with other people.”

The exhibition will have some familiar names as artists Leslie Norman Hubble and Elise Huther will be returning this year. Both artists were showcased in the 2020 exhibition.

“It really frees me up to be bold enough to show my art, because some people think it’s rather disturbing,” Norman Hubble said in the promotional video. “It’s often based on my disability and I try to make it more palatable through my art.” 

Norman Hubble’s pieces focus on “the struggle to be human, specifically a disabled human, and how to reconcile the inner and outer self,” her bio says on The Whole Person’s website.

Being a part of this exhibition is special to artist Sara Unrein because her art will be showcased alongside other artists who have disabilities like her, she said in the promotional video. Unrein’s pieces are interpretations of her friend’s facial expressions.

“Using oils on canvas, this series encouraged me to focus on the details I struggle with on a day-to-day basis,” her bio says.

Bemused by Sara Unrein

Artworks from the Expressions artists are available to bid on in a silent auction. Other prizes include a trip to the Kansas City Zoo, a private in-home wine tasting and a Patrick Mahomes jersey.

“Expressions strives to promote artists with disabilities by featuring their work in professionally organized art exhibitions and offering innovative educational and networking workshops,” according to The Whole Person’s website

The Expressions exhibition will remain at Rochester Brewing & Roasting Co. until the end of May before moving to The Thornhill Gallery in June.

The list of all exhibition locations and dates can be found on The Whole Person’s website.

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