I Remember Better When I Paint / Hilgos Foundation

I’ve found twitter to be an amazing social media connector. And what’s funny is initially I didn’t want to be bothered with a twitter account. I thought there was nothing better than Facebook, but once I got onto twitter, I was hooked. You connect with people faster, easier, avoid the middle man and are exposed or introduced to new people, organizations, websites and so on.

I can’t even begin to tell you what a great importance it has played in my journey as a caregiver. I know there are so many of us out there, working with family or friends who have Alzheimer’s, I have a few friends who were or are in the same situation as I am, but it can often be a very lonely or inward journey. You know you’re not alone, but you feel as if you are. So the beauty of twitter is when you write a word or mention a topic often you get on someone’s radar. Twitter may suggest someone to you, you may get responses to something you tweeted, or someone new is following you because of the shared journey. In time, you feel a new community of people around you haven’t met but the shared experience,  journey, or mission brings you all together. This was the case in discovering the Hilgos Foundation or rather they found me through a tweet or re-tweet and we’ve been following one another ever since.

The Hilgos Foundation was created in memory of Hilda Gorenstein, an accomplished painter for 75 years, who completed hundreds of paintings in the last three years of her life, while she struggled with profound memory loss. Their mission is to support and encourage the ongoing process of artistic creation with people who have memory problems and/or Alzheimer’s and who require assistance in creating art that is meaningful and enriching.

The Foundation in conjunction with Eric Ellena and Berna Huebner, of French Connection Films, put together a film entitled, “I Remember Better When I Paint”, narrated by Olivia de Havilland. “I Remember…” is the first international documentary about the positive impact of art and other creative therapies on people with Alzheimer’s and how they can change the way we look at the disease.

The film which I have not seen yet, but intend on purchasing is available on DVD on Amazon.com.

There is also an accompanying blog where you can follow their posts, activities and to see when and where they’re having viewings of the film.

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3 thoughts on “I Remember Better When I Paint / Hilgos Foundation

  1. Is it true about the painting? So many things are just too difficult for my dad to do. And we think he’s bored.

  2. Hi Christine,
    Sorry it’s taken me a minute to get back to you. I tried to get different things for my mom to do; puzzles, a craft item to put together, things for very young ages, but she either lost concentration after a few seconds or didn’t want to attempt it. After I saw the promotion video, I tried to get her to color which wasn’t as successful. So I wanted to get advice, and get some tips for you.

    I recommend painting or coloring with him. Maybe have him try to re-create something that was meaningful to him in the past. Was he in the service? Was there some place he liked to travel? Did he have a favorite pet? Or draw something together which I usually have to do with my mom. I have to start and have her join in with me.

    I understand it gets tougher each day to keep them engaged. But hang in there and thank you for reading my blog. Once I get that additional information I will share it with you.

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