CCARC show proves disability is no barrier to creation of art

Published on Monday, 10 June 2019 21:14
Written by Karla Santos


NEW BRITAIN - CCARC will have a gallery showing at the Art League of New Britain at the end of July and the president of the Paier College of Art has made a commitment to have a permanent spot at the Paier College of Art just for CCARC art work.

CCARC’s seventh Annual Art Show, which took place on Thursday at the organization’s headquarters, showcased more than 100 pieces of original artwork by adults supported by CCARC’s day programs and residential services.

Ryan Erickson sang and played his acoustic guitar while attendees enjoyed refreshments and walked through the building, exploring the art pieces throughout the hallways, in the board room and in the conference room, a permanent art space dedicated to Vince Stryeski, the resident artist, who helped design CCARC’s building. The board room also featured a PowerPoint display of CCARC’s services.

The gallery’s theme, “Making Dreams Happen Through Art,” highlighted the talents of people with disabilities.

Every year, the art show presents a feature artist - Jose Medina and his Speckles collection was the one selected for Thursday’s show.

Artists, family members, case managers and board members were among the attendees of the show.

Julie Erickson, senior vice president of CCARC, Inc., said that for the first time, the art show was selling the pieces and authors would receive some of the proceeds from the sale.

“The art committee at CCARC helps to foster the presence of the amazing art work that our individuals do in the community,” Erickson said. “The Making Dreams Happen Through Art program has really caught on with folks really enjoying and appreciating the beauty, the magnificence of the art. We’ve had art gallery showings at the West Hartford Art League, we are going to be at the Art League of New Britain at the end of July. We’ve been at Paier College of Art. We’ve really grown outside of our little art classes and now have entered into the community with the artworks that people can really appreciate the genuine beauty of the art here.”

Mary Jean Agostini, CCARC board member, said Thursday was a very special day.

“The art work is very special and extraordinary,” Agostini said. “It really shows their inner thoughts and feelings and they do a really good job expressing themselves. I think the pieces are priceless. I think their art work is excellent because of their free spirit and their free thinking.”

The show was a one-day exhibition, but the art work at the the Vince Stryeski art gallery has displays throughout the year and the art pieces are changed periodically.

“To me it is an honor, it’s not about me,” Stryeski said. “It’s about the ability of this wonderful art to be displayed. The conference room is used almost on a day-to-day basis. It has only been positive. It brightens the wall up, it’s cheerful.”

Stryeski said his favorite part of the annual CCARC exhibition “is always when the artists show up to see their art work. Just to see the excitement sparkle in their eyes,” he said.

Anne Ruwet, CCARC’s CEO, presented gifts to some of the people who made the show possible, including Erickson and Stryeski, who received a palette of paint.

To learn more about CCARC, call 860-229-6665 or visit .

Posted in The Bristol Press, Arts, General News on Monday, 10 June 2019 21:14. Updated: Monday, 10 June 2019 21:16.