Ginger Gehres, Art Ability 20, Bryn Mawr Rehab Hospital

Ginger Gehres, Early Warning, scratch board and colored inks, 20th Annual Art Ability Exhibition & Sale, Bryn Mawr Rehab Hospital

20th Annual Art Ability Exhibition & Sale, Bryn Mawr Rehab Hospital

“Visit, view and purchase artwork from the 20th Annual Art Ability Exhibition and Sale beginning the first Sunday in November. To inquire about purchasing artwork outside of business hours, email artability@mlhs.orgor call 484.596.5607.

Art Ability at Bryn Mawr Rehab Hospital is a year-round program which serves as a showcase and marketplace for talented artists. The program educates the community about the remarkable abilities of people with disabilities and inspires artists to reach beyond their limitations and explore their own creativity.

The annual, international juried Art Ability exhibition and sale is twelve-weeks in length and features art and fine crafts by artists with physical, cognitive, hearing and visual impairments.”


Ginger Gehres – Visual Bard 

Telling stories with art lets you see with your soul. Take a look and see what my offerings say to you…

In the days of Olde, before a written language was established, a Bard was one who was charged with the essential task of passing on the stories, history and traditions of their peoples through creative forms of storytelling and music. Honoring the traditions of my European ancestors, I’ve picked up the torch and am continuing the role with a little bit of a contemporary twist. I capture a piece of our world, as I see it, and let the observer interpret it in their own fashion. My works often demand closer inspection in order to understand where the narrative begins.” – Ginger Gehres


20th Annual Art Ability Exhibition & Sale, Bryn Mawr Rehab Hospital is an art exhibit that has enabled me as an artist to be promoted in a highly effective mode that focusses on art with an emphasis on the challenges in my way. The Patron’s Preview Gala is a fabulous party in a wonderfully accommodating space, meeting artists in wheelchairs and walkers mingling with collectors feels so natural and friendly. I feel that way every time I go to the Bryn Mawr Rehab Hospitaleveryone there is so kind and generous. Seeing old friends is the best part of the event, I’ve met really creative and interesting artists through the years.

Ralph Mindicino, Art Ability 20, Bryn Mawr Rehab Hospital

Ralph Mindicino, Cathedral, acrylic on plexiglass,  20th Annual Art Ability Exhibition & Sale, Bryn Mawr Rehab Hospital

Ralph Mindicino is one of those friends I have a bond with through Art Ability. He gets it. His art is really cool, too. Painting with acrylics in reverse on plexiglass the compositions usually include a lone figure walking through the landscape. Cathedral switches things up and makes the viewer the traveler entering a spiritual space. Mindicino’s artwork taps into the nerves and neurons where fears are faced, the lost are found and lives are lived.

Ralph Mindicino was born in 1960 on Long Island, New York. He studied fine art at the State University of New York at Fredonia and Stonybrook, acquiring skills in bronze and steel sculpture, pottery and oil painting. Ralph Mindicino sacrificed his right leg to bone cancer at the age of 14. The prospect of a long recovery mired in pain and boredom had a transformational effect on his psyche. Creating imaginary worlds provided escape and relief from the harsh realities of the physical world. My rehabilitation and psychic healing concluded with an outlook on life forever informed by the experience.” – Ralph Mindicino

Art Ability 20, Bryn Mawr Rehab Hospital, David Gerbstadt

20th Annual Art Ability Exhibition & Sale, Bryn Mawr Rehab Hospital, David Gerbstadt, First Prize 3D

David is another long time friend I knew first through the Philly art scene, the Philadelphia Dumpster Divers in particular. One of the interesting aspects of this particular show is the numbers of artists I already knew as active participants in the art scene. I speak about David Gerbstadt often, when folks ask me how to promote themselves I tell them to look up David. A social media savvy entrepreneur, Gerbstadt has learned the art of the ask. Plus his mixed media assemblages are magical.

Art Ability 20, Bryn Mawr Rehab Hospital, David Gerbstadt20th Annual Art Ability Exhibition & Sale, Bryn Mawr Rehab HospitalDavid Gerbstadt

“At 5 years old, David built small shelters in the yard out of scraps of carpet and rope. He would leave them up all year round even when it snowed. In kindergarten, David built on his own miniature pieces of furniture out of a plastic construction set. All through David’s schooling he created art in some way. In his senior year of high school, a paper sculpture of his was displayed in the faculty lounge.” – David Gerbstadt

Art Ability 20, Bryn Mawr Rehab Hospital, Max Tzinman

20th Annual Art Ability Exhibition & Sale, Bryn Mawr Rehab Hospital, Max Tzinman, Dejeuner Sur L’Herbe, mixed media on canvas

“My images are neither comforting, nor conventional. My work is often described as disturbing, exploring the drama of the duality within us all, and its link to the mindless escape within the mob.” – Max Tzinman‘s Art Statement

“Tzinman was born in Romania and lived in Israel and Canada, immersing himself in a multitude of cultures that influenced his artistic/philosophical concepts. Born with a severe hearing impairment, photography has allowed Tzinman to consistently tell his story in a continuously moving world.” – Art Ability catalog

Art Ability 20, Bryn Mawr Rehab Hospital, DoN Brewer

20th Annual Art Ability Exhibition & Sale, Bryn Mawr Rehab Hospital, DoN Brewer, Venus, digital collage from original photography, inkjet print

This is funny, when I got to the show I spotted this piece and then saw the curator Sherman Fleming. I asked him where my other work was and he said section A. I got confused and thought there was just this one listed but all three of my artworks were in section A! I have two paintings in the show, too, which look beautiful. It was so exciting, I never expected my work to be at the beginning of the exhibition – I wandered all the way to the end before I realized.

I’m pleased the jury selected this piece to be in the show; Venus was also exhibited at The Philadelphia Sketch Club’s Art of the Flower show. Originally designed for a Da Vinci Art Alliance show, the digital collage does relate to the way I feel about being chronically ill. It’s like being a Frankenstein experiment, creating a hybrid designed to fight an invisible force. I especially enjoy watching people look at this piece, they move in close to see what it is, a carnivorous plant of my own invention.

Art Ability 20, Bryn Mawr Rehab Hospital

20th Annual Art Ability Exhibition & Sale, Bryn Mawr Rehab HospitalSafety Pin Necklace by Beverly Kohn

The model wearing the safety pin necklace is blogger/photographer/scientist/rock star Laura Storck. We met the artist who designed this necklace, she was wearing a duplicate. I’m sorry I don’t remember her name but I remember her story. She had a traumatic brain injury and lost cognitive abilities like short term memory and remembering routine routes. The necklace is made from hundreds of safety pins, I believe each main pin has twenty pins attached creating a statement that crosses the lines between art, fashion, assemblage, punk, folk art, tramp art and fine crafts.

Update “The necklace Laura was wearing is by artist Beverly Kohn.  Her brain injury was suffered after being electrocuted by a neon sign at work. The necklace is still for sale if you’re looking for a holiday gift 😉  The photo is great though, with Laura holding the mirror. Thanks for sharing, I will send your post along to my colleagues!

Sara C. Baumgardner, Art Ability”

Art Ability 20, Bryn Mawr Rehab Hospital, DoNArTNeWs Philadelphia Art News Blog

20th Annual Art Ability Exhibition & Sale, Bryn Mawr Rehab Hospital. Photograph of David Gerbstadt, Ralph Mindicino and DoN Brewer by Laura Storck.

Thank you to Art Ability for continuing the program to promote artists from all over the world who are living with indelible stories of courage and creativity. The community of artists who share their stories and their art is so inspiring and informational. Learning about what forms disabilities take and the effects on an artist’s real world narrative, not some abstract idea, and then overlaying a visual feast of fabulous art, creativity and style is more than being philanthropic, it defines our culture.

Art Ability has a new website where you can buy art from the show.

Written by DoN Brewer except where noted

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