Art of Aging: Senior artists

Older artists in Philadelphia recently got a chance to showcase their talents while also earning some extra income.

Ronald Lee Washington is a Philadelphia Artist.

"What I'm trying to do in this piece, is let you know that every day everybody is on a route somewhere," he said.

Ronald Lee Washington has been studying art for the past 20 years.

Ellen Baer is also a Philadelphia artist.

She says, "I have had a pencil, a crayon, a pen in my hand since I was 3-years-old."

Ellen Baer thrives on anything artistic. Both had their works featured, last month, in an exhibit at Philadelphia's City Hall.

Tu Huynh, Exhibitions Manager, Philadelphia City Hall

"City Hall is the people's building, and it's a way of showcasing what we're all about. Their stories become our stories," said Tu.

It was the Philadelphia Corporation for Aging's 14th annual "Celebrate Arts and Aging."

Holly Lange, President and CEO of PCA says, "It's all art done by senior citizens from throughout the city, every neighborhood, seniors between the ages of 58 and 93.

This year, PCA showcased 175 works of art in City Hall, and 4 senior centers around the city. Money raised from the sale of the paintings goes back to the seniors themselves.

"Whether you are 9 or 90, you can make a contribution. You can be creative," said Ellen.

Ellen's piece, which she calls "Summer Strawberries" graced postcards and posters promoting the event.

"It was a delightful surprise," added Ellen.

Ronald's work, dubbed 'En Route,' is part of a series of cityscapes he's working on.

"Painting for me is very therapeutic and any time you have the opportunity to show your work, and network with other people, and the most important part is you can meet new clientele, laughs Ronald.

But for the artists, the chance to show off their work delivers benefits far beyond the financial.

Ellen says, "People are reminded about what seniors and others can actually do."

For more programs for seniors, visit our Art of Aging section.
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