When once I held lives in my hands, I now had trouble holding a glass without fear of dropping it. Soon after, at the suggestion of a friend, I began to paint. My art became a meditation, and my studio a sanctuary.
"Everybody has won, and all must have prizes!" the Dodo from Alice in Wonderland proclaimed. Except it is just not working out that way in the USA these days, if the "prize" is a "good job" in one's field of academic study.
I looked around the room at my friends, each straining to make circular motions with their less-than-flexible hips while trying to keep their heads still, and tried (unsuccessfully) to stifle a giggle.
Being with so many like-minded people and having a sense of camaraderie are clearly important dimensions of the experience for these artists. It's being in a place without stigma, where people believe in themselves and their abilities.
There are four activities that can typically reach persons at all stages of Alzheimer's disease. Being visited by a child is one of them, as young Max discovered. Others include having a visit from a pet, listening to or playing music and observing or creating artwork.
The myth about Alzheimer's is that it is a veritable death sentence. But as the filmmakers demonstrate, the creative arts can reunite even a late stage Alzheimer's sufferer with parts of his/her former self.