In celebration of the MDA Art Collection’s 15th anniversary, and in honor of the many artists who have been selected to be a part of it, we proudly present these works of art. The pieces reproduced here represent a cross-section of our artists — amateur and professional, young and not so young — and showcase the extraordinary abilities of people with disabilities.
For more, see the MDA Art Collection.
About Our Cover
"The Cello Player," an acrylic painting by Frank L. Bare of Mesquite, Nev., is one of some 350 pieces in the MDA Art Collection, which this year celebrates its 15th anniversary. Bare, who has inclusion-body myositis, was executive director of the U.S. Gymnastics Federation, and currently serves as chairman of the board for the International Gymnastics Hall of Fame.
|“Autumn” (digital media, 19½”x19½”) by Craig Wilderman, New Harmony, Ind. Craig, who has spinal muscular atrophy, began creating art at the age of 17 and won several awards for his work. He began painting on canvas while attending Southern Illinois University. He is active in theater groups and enjoys singing.|
|“My Father’s Tulips” (digital media, 37”x28”) by Michael Koester, Ashland, Ore. Michael, who has spinal muscular atrophy, worked as a commercial illustrator for many years; he later concentrated on fine art. This painting is a tribute to Michael’s father, who always had a garden which featured beautiful roses and tulips.|
|“Inner Landscape: San Diego” (oil, 29½”x35”) by Diane Louise Scher, Charleston, S.C. Diane, who has facioscapulohumeral muscular dystrophy, graduated from San Jose State University with a degree in fine arts. She owns a business that sells marine art, ship models and nautical artifices.|
|“Feathered Snowman” (tempera paint, 19½”x25¾”) by Chad Cahill, Fort Wayne, Ind. Chad, who has Duchenne muscular dystrophy, created this piece in 1998 at age 10 at an MDA-sponsored art workshop; it was featured in a past MDA Holiday Wishes card collection. He enjoys computer graphics and engineering classes.|
|“Tenacious Leaf” (watercolor, 23”x27”) by Audrey Falk, Willmar, Minn. Audrey, who has facioscapulohumeral muscular dystrophy, taught art for 26 years in Willmar public schools. She is an internationally recognized artist; two of her works are part of the Chagall Museum permanent collection in Belarus.|
|“Northern Lights” (oil, 11½”x13”) by Jennifer Getson, Aurora, Colo. Jennifer, who has Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease, worked in photography for many years. She then turned to various other media for creating art. Her work has been exhibited in numerous shows in Colorado and Nebraska.|
|“Siamese Fighting Fish” (watercolor, 21½”x18”) by Shelley Robinson, Gulfport, Miss. Shelley, who has Friedreich’s ataxia, is a former Mississippi MDA state goodwill ambassador. Painting has been a lifelong hobby; while a student she won awards for her artwork.|