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Keeping the love of art alive in individuals with dementia

By Brenda Nagey, Abe’s Garden and Park Manor Director of Life Engagement, Abe’s Garden and Park Manor 

How can I bring arts back into my loved one’s life who used to paint but now has vision problems?

  • Talk about art.
    • Reminisce about popular, well-liked artist works.  Ask why they like each piece and what it makes them feel or think.  
    • Find out favorite pieces of art and read them the biography of each artist.
  • Use their senses
    • Sculpt 3D projects where sensing with hands is essential.
    • Paint purposeful items in one color, like a ceramic unfinished coffee cup from a pottery place. Whirligigs and wood projects typically have several pieces that need to be painted one color each.
    • Play classical music and allow them to paint on an easel as the music moves them.
    • Decoupage a piñata.
    • Make string jewelry together.
    • Weave.
    • Press flowers and laminate to use as bookmarks.
    • Make bath salts.
    • Crochet

These art projects will need instruction and observation, but will be great engagement activities.

Bill Purcell, son of resident
"Abe’s Garden® really is a world class, cutting-edge, special, loving warm place. When my mother needed that very thing, it was there."
Industry Professional
“I was thoroughly impressed with the community [after taking a tour], yet I was even more impressed with your focus on continual learning and improvement.”
The Club Participant’s Wife
“The music instruction piece is very well done, and I commend Abe's [Garden] for creating it. I am also grateful for the incredible opportunities that [my husband] has every week day at Abe's.”