“Wheelchair Art” Bridges Generations at Retirement Community

Augie Webster is a ten-year-old boy with quadriplegic cerebral palsy, but he doesn’t let his physical limitations get him down. In fact, Augie was inspired by Sean Greene’s skateboard art to create “wheelchair art,” a project that has bridged the gap between generations at Goodwin House Bailey’s Crossroads, a continuing care retirement community in Falls Church, Virginia, where Augie demonstrated his process for creating masterpieces with residents. Wheelchair art is a fun intergenerational activity for assisted living residents

Augie’s technique for creating wheelchair art utilizes the wheels of his chair as brushes and enlists the help of Theo and Bea (his brother and sister), who assist Augie in maneuvering his chair per his directions (using his communication device) to create 18-by-24-foot works of art. Augie instructs one of his siblings to paint a pattern using colors he specifies, and after placing a sheet of paper over the paint, Theo or Bea pushes Augie around on top of the paper which results in a fun abstract masterpiece.

Bridging generations

What began as a fun family project has expanded to benefit the older generation. “The art studio and culture at Goodwin House was tailor-made to explore making this art as an intergenerational activity,” says Steve Gurney, an eldercare advocate and founder of the Guide to Retirement Living SourceBook, who helped the Webster family make the concept a reality.

The project at Goodwin House, which includes independent living, assisted living and nursing home care, was a huge success. Residents used not only wheelchairs, but other mobility devices such as scooters, walkers and rollators to create unique masterpieces all their own. Augie’s wheelchair art was met with enthusiasm by both residents and staff–and Augie isn’t about to stop there. Kathy Webster, Augie’s mother, is currently working with other long-term care communities to replicate the program for residents.

Supporting Wheelchair Action Art

Augie’s wheelchair art has become so popular, he now has his own website, Wheelchair Action Art, and his art is found on t-shirts, coffee mugs and more at CafePress.com and Zaggle.com. Augie also takes special requests for custom paintings, and all his earnings go towards art production expenses. He hopes to one day earn enough money to spread the joy of creating meaningful art with adults and children of all ages and abilities.

You can support Augie’s mission by purchasing art through Wheelchair Action Art. If you’re an activities professional or other staff member in assisted living, skilled nursing care, independent living or another community setting and have an interested in learning more about bringing wheelchair art to your community, you can tune in to the ProAging Community’s webinar this Thursday, July 21st: “Going Beyond Bingo: Activities that Promote Engagement for All Ages and Abilities.”

Image Copyright ColinBroug on Stock.xchng

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10 Responses to ““Wheelchair Art” Bridges Generations at Retirement Community”

  1. wheelchair art is fun because it makes the heavy feeling of not being able to walk lighter. it also gives joy to those who will use the wheelchair with art of love painted on it.

  2. [...] here: "Wheelchair Art" Bridges Generations at Retirement Community – SeniorHomes.com This entry is filed under News and tagged bridged-the-gap, bridges, continuing-care, crossroads, [...]

  3. Physical disability is a not a barrier for them who want success in life. Austin Webster is an example of this. He is wheelchair bound, but he makes lots of masterpieces using his chair wheels as a brush. What an engaging and motivational post! This unique art is also being used in elder care, nursing homes and is getting huge success. They also use other mobility devices like scooters; walkers for creating master pieces. This art is very useful for elders who are not able to walk, to engage themselves in doing this and also get benefited in terms of money.

  4. [...] work touched the creative light of wheelchair bound, 10 year old Augie Webster. Webster, a quadriplegic diagnosed with cerebral palsy, was entranced by Greene’s idea of [...]

  5. [...] work touched the creative light of wheelchair bound, 10 year old Augie Webster. Webster, a quadriplegic diagnosed with cerebral palsy, was entranced by Greene’s idea of [...]

  6. Looks interesting!

  7. [...] “Wheelchair Art” Bridges Generations at Retirement Community [...]

  8. heart rhythm says:

    This is very inspiring. He does not see his condition as a hindrance but rather uses it to come up with meaningful creations with the help of his loved ones.

  9. Angela Stringfellow says:

    Totally agree! I have a good friend whose baby girl has suffered a brain injury (surgical complication from a rare congenital brain malformation) but just read the book “Unthinkable: A Mother’s Tragedy, Terror and Triumph through a Child’s Traumatic Brain Injury”…so inspiring! Paul Coskie and his mother Dixie now speak publicly to educate the world on the importance of wearing helmets. I love nothing more than when those who have suffered unthinkable tragedies turn it into something positive and inspirational for others. And I know my friend and her little girl will do the same! :) Thanks for reading our blog!

  10. Bill says:

    The whole thing looks a little to good to be true. I don’t doubt the boy did the art, but with all the T-shirt sales and other stuff being marketed and sold, I got to wonder how many adults are behind the scene.
    The web site is slicker than goose shit on the the sidewalk. I think someone has paid a fare sum to develop the website or some behind the scences adult is an insider with a great deal of knowledge and experience in Internet marketing and sales.

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