WMU News

Annual art camp for children with visual impairments

July 19, 2000

KALAMAZOO -- Western Michigan University again is joining with the Michigan Foundation for the Blind and the Michigan School for the Deaf and Blind to offer the third Art Education Camp for Youths with Visual Impairments.

With the theme of "Art in Nature," the camp is being split into two parts under the direction of Dr. Paul Ponchillia, a WMU professor of blind rehabilitation, and Helen Lee, a blind rehabilitation instructor. The first part, from July 30-Aug. 3, is a five-day workshop at Camp Tuhsmeheta near Greenville, Mich., at 10500 Lincoln Lake Road. Teachers will work with campers on stone carving, clay sculpting, pottery making, photography and drawing. Art instruction will be provided by Kalamazoo area artists Ann Landry, Joe Smiegeil, Mike Donenfeld, Brian Young and Ponchillia and Lee.

The camp will open with a presentation of Inuit stone carving and culture offered by Kathleen Buday of the Dennos Museum of Traverse City. The Dennos Museum is the largest holder of Inuit stone sculpture in the United States. The camp will culminate in an exhibition designed by the young artists. All events are open to the public.

The second part of the project is the "Touch First Exhibit," a dual exhibition of the work of the camp's children and instructors. The exhibit will be part of the Art Council of Greater Kalamazoo's popular Gallery Hop series on Friday, September 8.

The young artists' sculpture and pottery exhibit will open at WMU's Unified Clinics at 1000 Oakland Drive, while an exhibit site for drawings and photography has not been set. Both exhibits will be open from 5 to 7 p.m.

Media contact: Mark Schwerin, 616 387-8400, mark.schwerin@wmich.edu

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