An ink and watercolor painting by Homer High School student Anna Neland was one of the pieces created for the Homer Council on the Arts’ “Art from the Heart” project. Student artists created art that was shared in November 2020 with local seniors in isolation during the COVID-19 pandemic in Homer, Alaska. (Photo courtesy Homer Council on the Arts)

An ink and watercolor painting by Homer High School student Anna Neland was one of the pieces created for the Homer Council on the Arts’ “Art from the Heart” project. Student artists created art that was shared in November 2020 with local seniors in isolation during the COVID-19 pandemic in Homer, Alaska. (Photo courtesy Homer Council on the Arts)

Artists, musicians share art with seniors in ‘Art from the Heart’ program

Musicians and student artists shared their creations with local seniors recently in the Homer Council on the Arts’ “Art from the Heart” program, the arts council announced in a press release last Friday.

The arts council started the project in response to the isolation seniors have experienced during the COVID-19 pandemic as assisted living homes have been placed under tight controls to keep the novel coronavirus from spreading among vulnerable elders. The arts council invited teachers and Connections homeschool staff to have students make colorful, uplifting artwork for seniors. They received more than 90 works from students in grades kindergarten to 12, according to the press release.

“The residents were thrilled to receive the artwork. The residents said, ‘the kids did an amazing job and to please tell them thank you,’” Robbie Fuller of Homer Senior Citizens Inc. wrote in a letter to the arts council.

The arts council also put out a call to performing artists impacted financially by the pandemic, according to the press release. Four performing artists or ensembles received a commission to help them through a time of economic hardship caused by a loss in performing opportunities. Receiving commissions were Kevin Cope and the band Trial and Error, Breezy Berryman for the Motivity Dance Collective, Johnny B. and the Devil’s Club Orchestra, and Kate Rich. These artists created recordings based on the theme of connection and community support that were distributed to the seniors. Performances can be seen at www.homerart.org/heart.

“Art from the Heart” works were distributed to all residents at South Peninsula Hospital’s Long Term Care, the Homer Senior Center’s Friendship Terrace, and individual recipients nominated or identified through the Independent Living Center. Art From the Heart was made possible through grants from the Jessica M. Stevens Memorial, Ashley J. Logan and the Opportunity Funds at the Homer Foundation.

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