When I see something beautiful, I want the world to slow down to allow enough time to appreciate it. My first Tuesday in Washington DC, I visited Iona Senior Services. Lila Oliver Asher’s prints hung in the gallery – which winds itself through the entire downstairs floor – and really took my breath away. The decisive lines, the clarity of the forms, the playful figures.
It was a thrill to have lunch with Lila, age 94, and hear about her creative life including her time as a portrait artist for the USO, drawing soldiers for their families. Also joining us was pioneering silk artist Diane Tuckman and painter Cathy Abramson. We had a great time, and I had a great bean burger and fries.
I really was inspired by being with artists and printmakers with long careers, producing new work, just offering a little reminder about how creativity is a brilliant thing for everyone, at all times, and there’s never enough time to make all the work we’d all like to, and how opportunities can open up regardless of your age.
My time at Iona Senior Services was organised by Patricia Dubroof, who curates the gallery and supports professional artists (all aged 60+) with such joy and passion for her work.
Patricia, the kindest most enthusiastic soul I’ve met so far, runs three artist-in-residence schemes each year, and has in the past brought in poets to respond to the artwork on offer. She has a keen eye for talent, and has boosted the careers of many artists. Wonderful stuff!
Above: At Cathy Abramson’s exhibition, some of Lila’s prints, all the artists together with Patricia (also an artist!)