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Book details
  • SubGenre:Women
  • Language:English
  • Pages:144
  • eBook ISBN:9781483539690

Aging Artfully

12 Profiles: Visual and Performing Women Artists 85-105

by Amy Gorman

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Aging Artfully presents magnificent role models over the age of 85, and their engagement in the creative arts. Gorman interviews twelve women who maximize the possibilities and potentials that living longer affords. They demonstrate that creative thinking and actions continue until the very end, and give us pause when the thought arises, “Oh, I can’t learn anything new at this old age.” The book includes many photos and suggests reasons why arts activities are ideal ways to increase health in the last stages of life.
Based on Amy Gorman¹s interviews, Aging Artfully portrays the lives of 12 vibrant women in the visual and performing arts, all in their ninth decade and beyond, living with zest. They are living in the San Francisco Bay Area coming from diverse ethnic backgrounds: Frances Catlett, painter; Elsie Ogata, ikebana artist; Isabel Ferguson, actor and visual artist; Lily Hearst, pianist; Grace Gildersleeve, rug braider; Ann Davlin (aka Grace Lowell) dancer; Mary Beth Washington (aka Orunamama), storyteller: Rosa Maria Morales Escobar, folklorico dancer; Madeleine Mason, sculptor; Dorothy Takahashi Toy, dancer; Faith Petric, folksinger; Stella Toogood, storyteller. Includes an abundant collection of photos celebrating the womens’ stories. The book honors the rich creativity of aging and challenges popular negative attitudes and perceptions towards being old. The book suggests reasons why arts activities are ideal ways to increase health in the last stages of life. The positive role models portrayed are still completely engaged with and in love with their art forms. They have no time for complaining. “Aging Artfully is a book to be treasured and… shared.” Jim Cox, Midwest Book Review Winner Bronze IPPY award.
About the author
A retired social worker and author in the field of aging and the arts, Amy Gorman founded Project Arts and Longevity to synthesize her interest and expertise in both the arts and the elderly. As a social worker with the older population, she observed and worked with the devastating effects of dementia and Alzheimer’s Disease. As a producer of live theater, music and dance for children, adult performers shared stories about their fears of growing older and not being able to support themselves in their chosen art forms. She served for many years on the Board of Directors of Lifelong Medical Care/Over 60 Clinic in Berkeley and Oakland, California, which addresses the social and medical needs of the aged. As the author of Aging Artfully, 12 Profiles of Visual and Performing Women Artists 85-105, and as a featured person in the film, “Still Kicking,” which follows 6 of the women in her book, she is addressing audiences nationwide to promote the ideas and research behind aging creatively and positively. The women in the book serve as role models for her work in positive aging. Currently, she facilitates groups in Guided Autobiography in the San Francisco, Ca. Bay Area, and online. She believes that life review and reminiscence is one of the most creative acts of elderhood. Besides hanging out with women artists over 85 and schmoozing with many friends, she is a devotee of Stagebridge, the oldest theater company for seniors in the U.S. She also likes to walk the dog, travel, play tennis and cook with her 3 grandchildren. She lives with her husband in Berkeley, CA.
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