First year graduate student Rea Walsh, who is hard of hearing, has been included in the annual juried show presented by VSA, the international organization on arts and disability, and Volkswagen Group of America, Inc. Rea earned her BFA in Metal and Jewelry Design at R.I.T, School for American Crafts. She is currently working towards her MFA in Jewelry/Metals/CAD-CAM at Tyler.
This year’s theme was Momentum, which asks emerging artists to examine the vital creative spark behind their work. This exhibition features the work of 15 emerging artists with disabilities. Rea’s sculpture, The Wall, (pictured above, 20.5″ x 7″ x 21″) was created in 2009 of steel, spray paint, water and smoke.
Besides Rea, this year’s honored artists include Dimelza Broche (Florida), Holiday Campanella (Pennsylvania), Will Copps (District of Columbia), Angela Godoy (Maryland), Brian Kellett (Ohio), Krista Kuskye (Indiana), Emily Gail Lyles (South Carolina), Artur Matveichenkov (Puerto Rico), Emily McPeek (California), Caitlin Miller (District of Columbia), Xi Nan (Maryland), Sonya Seitz (Pennsylvania), Jansen Smith (Florida), and Beth Zarden-Benson (Wisconsin).
VSA, the international organization on arts and disability, was founded more than 35 years ago by Ambassador Jean Kennedy Smith to provide arts and education opportunities for people with disabilities and increase access to the arts for all. With 52 international affiliates and a network of nationwide affiliates, VSA is changing perceptions about people with disabilities around the world. Each year, 7 million people of all ages and abilities participate in VSA programs, which cover all artistic genres. VSA is an affiliate of the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts.
Momentum is the 9th exhibition in this series presented by VSA and Volkswagen Group of America, Inc. The partnership supports young artists at a critical time when many are deciding whether to pursue the arts as a career. The award validates and supports that life-defining choice. Presented in coordination with the Kennedy Center and the Smithsonian’s Office of Accessibility.