Sunday, December 15, 2013

Supporting the Arts in Portland, ME & Portland, OR

Quote of the day: "The creative process doesn't have to stop with age. It really can deepen with age. And (for) one's imagination...age isn't a barrier." - Jean Badran, Elder Arts Program Director, SPIRAL Arts, Portland, Maine.

A former colleague of mine, Rev. Priscilla Dreyman, is Executive Director of a non-profit community arts organization in Portland, Maine called SPIRAL Arts. At this annual time of giving I invite you to visit the organization's web site and consider a gift to support their mission:

SPIRAL Arts offers opportunities to people of all ages and life experiences who are seeking hope, purpose, and meaning,
to create art in a supportive, spiritually centered, caring community.

Non-profit community arts organization
SPIRAL Arts was founded in 1992, it is a small non-profit community arts organization in Portland, Maine, which seeks to make the arts available and accessible to people of all ages and from all walks of life. In inter-generational classes and workshops, a deep and lasting community grows among people of great diversity as they make and share art together.

Reaching out to isolated people
SPIRAL Arts reaches out to city people isolated by poverty, racism, classicism, loneliness, mental illness, special needs, AIDS, aging, terminal or serious illness, abuse and neglect, sexual orientation, or religion -- whatever isolates an individual, family, or group of people.

Innovative programming
SPIRAL Arts is a unique and innovative program. It brings opportunities for art making to the people, helping them to discover resources for growth within themselves. It seeks to work with those who are disenfranchised, isolated, marginalized, and help them become integrated into a caring and supportive community.

Building community
SPIRAL Arts seeks to build a community grounded in hope that is inter-generational, cross class, interfaith, multi-cultural and and multi-racial -- inclusive in every sense of the word. It breaks down barriers of stereotyping and fear through creating in community.

SPIRAL Arts is founded on collaboration. The organization brings opportunities for artistic creativity into the business world, demonstrating how the creative process is the basis for creative collaborations, team building, and staff rejuvenation. It provides opportunities for new and experienced artists to share their gifts of artistic expression with people of great diversity, serving as companions on the journey of creativity. Most of the artists who teach at SPIRAL Arts also take other courses with the organization to nurture their own creative skills.

As a program, SPIRAL Arts is relatively inexpensive due to its use of volunteers, interns, recycled materials, donated space from community institutions. Due to nationwide publicity SPIRAL Arts has received calls from around the country asking about the organizations model of transformation and community building through the arts. In reality, SPIRAL Arts can be duplicated anywhere and adapted to any situation, be it rural, suburban, or urban, secular or religious. The raw materials of creativity and the limitless possibilities for collaboration are available anywhere in our entire world. The people of the Third World, whose lives are grounded in creative expression, whose liberation movements are often fired by art and music, are models of this reality.


Meanwhile, Amy Henderson (who some of our friends will recognize as the maid of honor to Tash and me at our 2007 wedding), continues to sucessfully operate the non-profit art gallery in Portland, Oregon, known as The Geezer Gallery.


The Geezer Gallery is doing great work carrying out its mission. But, as with most non-profit organizations, it depends on the generosity of supporters like you and me for survival.

Here are the links to the Geezer Gallery web site and Facebook page. Learn more. Spread the word. Help out in any way you can.

Thank you!