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Katie Keller, a 2020 graduate of Sacred Heart Greenwich, learned how precious life is from watching her grandmother’s experiences with Alzheimer’s disease.
It also inspired her artwork, as Keller reflected on how Alzheimer’s disease impacted her family.
“I decided to focus on my grandmother’s experience with Alzheimer’s disease and I wanted to portray that through my art,” Keller said.
A year ago, she took a picture of her grandmother sitting alone on a chair at a beach club. Behind her grandmother and to the side of her are a row of empty beach chairs. Keller used the picture and an old letter that her grandmother had written, to create a piece of artwork that was selected for this year’s iCreate 2020 exhibit at the Bruce Museum.
“I chose that photo, because she is isolated. I used the letter to show the memories she has lost and the image itself exposes the loneliness of the disease,” Keller said.
Keller has learned a lot about Alzheimer’s disease through her personal experiences and through extensive research.
“I realize you can’t take any moment for granted,” she said. “It has opened my eyes to cherishing every moment. It is sad to see this heart-wrenching disease up close.”
In her first three years at Sacred Heart Greenwich, Keller took photography, then as a senior, she enjoyed AP Studio Art.
“It was a mix between drawing, painting and photography,” she said. “I am so glad I took it, it was one of my favorite classes. ... I am very appreciative of Paula Westcott, my art teacher at Sacred Heart, who helped me find a passion.”
Now she is excited to share her artwork with the public.
“I am kind of blown away right now for having my artwork chosen for the iCreate 2020 exhibition,” said Keller, who is heading to Duke University, where she will play lacrosse.
Keller is one of six students from Greenwich schools whose artwork will be featured in the annual show.
Each year, Greenwich’s Bruce Museum celebrates works of fine art by emerging young artists with its iCreate exhibition. From more than 850 submissions, 56 were selected for this year’s iCreate 2020 display.
In addition to Keller, the local artists include Charlotte Gillis and Skye Anker, who are rising seniors at Greenwich Academy; Rachel Ong, a 2020 Greenwich Academy graduate; Greenwich High School rising senior Martina Sophia Phelan; and Madison Silva, a 2020 GHS graduate.
The iCreate 2020 exhibition will be on display from June 27, when the museum reopens, to Aug. 2.