Two dozen artists living with an acquired brain injury will display their artwork at The Reach Gallery Museum Abbotsford beginning Nov. 5. (Communitas photo: Angelika Dawson)

Two dozen artists living with an acquired brain injury will display their artwork at The Reach Gallery Museum Abbotsford beginning Nov. 5. (Communitas photo: Angelika Dawson)

Show exhibits work by artists with acquired brain injury

‘Happiness’ exhibit hosted in Abbotsford from Nov. 5 to Jan. 9

Communitas Supportive Care Society and the Fraser Valley Brain Injury Association (FVBIA) present an art show starting Thursday, Nov. 5 featuring work created by people living with acquired brain injury.

The exhibit, titled Happiness, will be shown at The Reach Gallery Museum (32388 Veterans Way) until Jan. 9 in the Community Art Space.

The theme developed as participants in the project reflected on the journey with brain injury in the midst of a pandemic.

“We wanted to invite viewers to consider the sources of happiness even while they are experiencing the challenges of living with COVID,” says Mary McKee, case manager with FVBIA.

The exhibit includes art from nearly two dozen artists, who are connected through the Brain Injury Drop-In groups hosted by Communitas in Abbotsford and Chilliwack, and through the FVBIA.

RELATED: Communitas Supportive Care staff continue to provide essential support

At the beginning of the pandemic, some of the artists continued to work on their art in the safety of their homes. Others participated in art classes online.

When the province began to open again, the two organizations coordinated in-person classes for those who wanted to explore painting further.

Artist and teacher John Le Flock has been leading art classes through these organizations for several years. He enjoys working with the brain injury groups and says the art classes are more than simply something to do.

The camaraderie of being together with people who understand life with a brain injury and the positive feedback they receive is vital.

“Creating art is about confidence as much as it is about talent,” Le Flock says. “It is important to stimulate the brain but it’s also important to realize that you are creating something unique that gives others happiness, too.”

Esther Tremblay, who coordinates the Brain Injury Drop-In in Chilliwack, says that she has heard participants talk about the impact that has come out of these classes.

“They use words like ‘connection,’ ‘hope,’ and ‘support’ as they talk about building their self-confidence and self-esteem,” she says.

Sheral Jones coordinates the Brain Injury Drop-In in Abbotsford. She says she is amazed at the level of talent in the group and the variety of artistic means that the artists use to express themselves.

“We’ve got people working in oils, acrylics, photography, and more,” she says. “Their work is amazing by any standard. The fact that they are all living with the impact of an acquired brain injury makes it all the more astounding.”

Along with the physical exhibit, The Reach will also have images of the art work and artist statements on their website at thereach.ca.

RELATED: Communitas Film Club in Abbotsford makes a western

Arts and culture

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

(Black Press - file photo)
WEATHER: Enjoy the sun today, prepare for a week of rain

Clouds and rain to arrive by evening, Environment Canada forecasts

Chilliwack’s Ryan Wugalter with his kids, three-year-old Mira and 15-month-old Solomon. Wugalter recently released his children’s album Super Giraffe. (Submitted)
Chilliwack father releases children’s album, songs about superhero giraffe and not eating magnets

Inspiration for Ryan Wugalter’s new album ‘Super Giraffe’ came from his two young kids

Abbotsford’s Kris Collins turned to TikTok out of boredom when the provincial COVID-19 lockdown began in March 2020. She now has over 23 million followers on the video app. Photo: Submitted
Internet famous: Abbotsford’s Kris Collins is a TikTok comedy queen

Collins has found surprise stardom alone with a phone

Several Abbotsford citizens and athletes have participated in the SOBC’s Polar Plunge fundraiser campaign. (Facebook photo)
Abbotsford residents taking the Polar Plunge for SOBC

Local Michelle Hill jumping into Albert Dyck Park on Saturday, several others also taking part

Passengers aboard Komagata Maru in Vancouver’s Burrard Inlet, 1914 - Library and Archives Canada image
Abbotsford council is asked to rename street in memory of Komagata Maru victims

Most of 376 the passengers aboard ship were denied entry into Canada in 1914

Dr. Bonnie Henry leaves the podium after talking about the next steps in B.C.’s COVID-19 Immunization Plan during a press conference at Legislature in Victoria, B.C., on Friday, January 22, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
COVID: 589 new cases in B.C., and 7 new deaths

No new outbreaks being reported Feb. 26

Judith Uwamahoro is Black, approximately 4’7″ tall, 80 pounds and has short black hair and brown eyes. (Surrey RCMP handout)
UPDATED: Lower Mainland 9-year-old located after police make public plea

Judith Uwamahoro went missing Friday at around 4 p.m. in Surrey

Five-year-old Nancy Murphy wears a full mask and face shield as she waits in line for her kindergarten class to enter school during the COVID-19 pandemic on Tuesday, September 15, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
Variant of concern linked to COVID-19 outbreak at three Surrey schools

Cases appear to be linked to community transmissions, but schools will remain open

BC Ferries experienced heavy traffic on Feb. 27 following cancellations the day before due to strong winds and adverse weather. (Black Press Media file photo)
BC Ferries sailings fill up quickly after Friday cancellations due to high winds

Waits expected on Swartz Bay-Tsawwassen route, Horseshoe Bay-Departure Bay route

Nanaimo children’s author and illustrator Lindsay Ford’s latest book is ‘Science Girl.’ (Photo courtesy Lindsay Ford)
B.C. children’s writer encourages girls to pursue the sciences in new book

Lindsay Ford is holding a virtual launch for latest book, ‘Science Girl’

Pig races at the 145th annual Chilliwack Fair on Aug. 12, 2017. Monday, March 1, 2021 is Pig Day. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress file)
Unofficial holidays: Here’s what people are celebrating for the week of Feb. 28 to March 6

Pig Day, Canadian Bacon Day and Grammar Day are all coming up this week

Staff from the Marine Mammal Rescue Centre, passersby, RCMP and Nanaimo Fire Rescue carried a sick 300-kilogram steller sea lion up the steep bluff at Invermere Beach in north Nanaimo in an attempt to save the animal’s life Thursday. (Photo courtesy Marine Mammal Rescue Centre)
300-kilogram sea lion muscled up from B.C. beach in rescue attempt

Animal dies despite efforts of Nanaimo marine mammal rescue team, emergency personnel and bystanders

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Doctors and counsellors warn of an increase in panic attacks, anxiety, depression and suicide ideas between ages 10 to 14, in Campbell River. ( Black Press file photo)
Extended pandemic feeding the anxieties of B.C.’s youth

Parents not sure what to do, urged to reach out for help

Most Read