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Creativity and memories

Bringing families together

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Dunedin Railway Station is one of the most beautiful buildings in the country and is home to the Otago Art Society.

Thousands of overseas visitors pass through the building’s galleries every week to view the art work, and over the next few weeks will be enjoying the works and memorabilia of our Dunedin Ryman Village residents.

Last night the exhibition was officially opened and was attended by about 100 people. It’s the brainchild of Mari Gomes, a care assistant at Yvette Williams who is an artist herself.

Mari is passionate about art and wanted to display the many works our talented residents have not only created themselves, but also some of the memorabilia and family heirlooms, and to tell the stories behind them.

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Last night, with Ryman Healthcare’s sponsorship, the Art Society’s venue and support, and the brilliant planning and event management of Dunedin’s Sales Advisor, Kate Morgan that dream became a reality.

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The residents and guests were piped into the building in true Dunedin fashion.

The evening brought families together with some close to tears. They were so proud of their parent’s work.

Fiona Gilbert, whose mother Margaret is in special care said it created a positive link for her family.

Margaret’s grandchildren are too young to remember Margaret when she was well, and Fiona was thrilled able to bring them to see her mother’s work on display.

It made a connection for them and inspired them.

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Some of the memorabilia was quirky and some of historical significance.

Other pieces were family heirlooms like the christening gown worn by five generations of Ngaire Johnston’s family.

Three generations were present for the exhibition opening, Ngaire, Ruth and Meghan.

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Many of the residents had only taken up art in their later years while others had a lifetime of creativity.

Doug Hart, the President of the Otago Art Society said the volunteers really enjoyed putting the exhibition together.

“This exhibition brings out the best from a generation of life experienced folk. Life is a series of memories and the exhibition sets out to accurately portray this.

Learning new skills makes us come alive, have self-worth and a purpose and enjoy the day ahead.

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What a wonderful thing it is to be able to transfer your thoughts and ideas onto a lifeless piece of paper or canvas and make it come alive.

What a powerful thing to be able to make people laugh, cry, think or discuss, with just a few strokes of the brush or pen.

Aging is not lost youth but a new stage of opportunity and strength!"

 

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