Art doesn’t fit inside one generic box, and neither does this community.
A quick snippet about myself: I’m Brina Bui, a medical student at McGovern Medical School. I’m an Albert Schweitzer Fellow for the 2018-2019 school year. For my fellowship project, I’m partnering with the Alzheimer’s Association to create an art program for people living with early-stage memory loss.
Art means so many things to different people: from doodles made while chatting on the phone to the Mona Lisa hanging in the Louvre. People use it to express themselves in a way that transcends words, or simply just to relax. At the end of the day, you can utilize art in an infinite amount of ways to enrich your life. The idea behind this art program is to have a free space for people living with early-stage memory loss to create art and feel connected to their community. My goal is for people to escape the world of medical diagnoses and losses for a few hours and instead focus on how meaningful their lives still are.
I recently held a focus group at the Alzheimer’s Association to see what the community wants from this art program instead of imposing what I think they want on them. From that meeting, I learned that they key to running a successful art program is to be flexible and offer the participants options that they can choose from. Some people want to paint on pre-made canvases while others prefer a blank one. Art doesn’t fit inside one generic box, and neither does this community.
I’m really excited for what this year has to offer—please join me on my journey~