AIM and the community enjoyed a celebration of creativity during AIM’s first annual Art Show and ADA Celebration on Wednesday, July 26, at the Inn at Reading. More than 200 attendees roamed the aisles browsing through pieces of art both unique and inspirational. The artists who created these master works are all individuals with disabilities.
The palette of artists included painters and pointillists, photographers and weavers, writers and jewelers, origami experts and calligraphers, and more. There was something new for everyone’s to see. All of the artists were from the region and had a disability of some sort. The event was as much a celebration of the ADA as it was a celebration of artistry, perseverance, and talent.
By nearly every measure, AIM’s first Art Show and ADA Celebration was a rousing success. We had a steady, admiring crowd. The artists appreciated the interest shown in their work. Every artist sold at least one of their pieces. The event generated attention from the media with BCTV, WFMZ, and the Reading Eagle all making appearances throughout the show.
The artists all were present to explain their creative processes and share their stories of inspiration and wonder. These artists took relationships, the natural world, experiences, and flights of fancy and turned them into enduring works of creativity. No one can deny the artist spirit present in that banquet hall.
The idea for the Art Show came about after surveying consumers regarding last year’s awareness march in Reading that celebrated the signing of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990. The march had been a regular event for AIM and the usual way the organization celebrated the ADA signing. The result of the survey showed that consumers were interested in a new event, out of July’s heat and humidity. Further planning developed into the Art Show and AIM staff spent more than six months planning it.
Ultimately, over 30 artists and small support staff from AIM pulled off a well-reviewed, well-received, and well-executed celebration and art show. AIM sincerely thanks the artists, volunteers, staff, and sponsors of the event. Sponsors included the Berks County Bar Association, Fleetwood Bank, Eisenhauer Nissan, Reading Elevator Service, and UPMC Health Plan with special thanks to Berks Deaf & Hard of Hearing Services and The Inn at Reading.