These teens have all put their hearts on the line and worked very hard on these creative mixed media collages about themselves. We're very excited to exhibit and celebrate these innovative works.
- Amy Bradshaw, Cool Arts Artistic Coordinator
Mark Mercer / Artist Statement
Well I would have to say that art gives our lives immortality. As a person we should not give up on our passion because when you create magnificent art then it can become something worth a lifetime. I hope my art inspires people to show who they are inside of themselves.
Art is in all of us. Without our art and God's art there would be less to share with the people you love.
I have started Cool Arts many years ago. My favourite art style is beyond wild. Just like other artists.
I do love creating different art so that art can grow like a little weed into a beautiful garden. My art is an expression of my journey through the world.
Shane Cook / Artist Statement
I am Shane Cook. My birthday is May 24, 1979.
I go to Pathways and go to Access in Kelowna. I go hiking with Pathways and do Hand in Service, which is volunteering at the Kelowna Food Bank. I enjoy taking photos of Nature, yard work and going to the Hot Springs.
I have been going to Cool Arts since 2004. My favourite things about Cool Arts are painting, learning new things and meeting new friends.
Jordan Lige / Artist Statement
Life is a great ride.
When I paint, I feel relaxed and calm.
I like painting things like ninja birds and castles
and dragons because it's like painting a story.
People looking at it can make their own story out of it.
I also like painting houses because I live in one of my own.
I like using a lot of color in all my art - my favorite
color is red, but I like using blue too.
I also use pencil crayons in my sketchbooks.
Tyler is a 19-year old artist living with Autism. He was born in Gander, Newfoundland and has lived in Kelowna for 17 years. Tyler enjoys illustration and animation; drawing much of his inspiration from his favourite character Gundam and Japanese Anime. Art plays a huge role in Tyler’s life. He has been drawing, sculpting with modelling clay; and building 3D models and buildings since he was 6 years old. He began attending Cool Arts’ Teen & Transitioning Adult program in 2014 and has continued to participate in Cool Arts adult classes. Tyler began drawing his Virtual X Series consisting of 12 volumes in 2015.
In addition to being a creative outlet, Tyler enjoys the sensory aspect of art creation. It has a calming effect and provides a vehicle for communication.
James is a 22 year-old autistic artist, born and raised in Kelowna. James loves exploring and mixing textures and colours. Layering textures has been one of his favorite things since childhood. James loves to build layered landscapes, whether in nature – with sand, gravel, sticks and leaves; at home – with playdough, hundreds of stickers or pillows and blankets, or in the studio – with potter’s clay or multiple layers of paint. James also loves being with others while he creates. As a longtime family friend put it: "The sheer joy that I have seen on James's face when spending time with family and friends, or doing an activity that he loves, is represented in his art!"
Meet Shannon Armstrong!
Shannon poses with her newly painted canvas
Francis working hard on a new painting
Smile for the camera!