I’ve been wanting for a while to do some volunteer work (especially through photography) in my local community (Timisoara), thus supporting and promoting ideas and project that I believe in.
This week I had the chance to be the photographer (as volunteer) for an event within a project that I really liked and I would like to tell you about it too.
Mr. Ion Iovescu (66 years old), ill with Parkinson. Here he is a guide in the Museum of Art in Timisoara, telling stories about the paintings of Corneliu Baba (a Romanian painter) to a very special audience: people ill with Alzheimer from a Day Care Center in Timisoara
This is a project initiated and coordinated by Marius Cornea – museum curator and educator within the Museum of Art Timisoara. This was not part of his job and it impresses me every time I see someone taking initiative by doing something to help others or to change things for the better. This project started about three years ago. Marius was training highschool students to be museum guides. Actually “guide” might be a too formal term. They were trained to present through games and informal stories the paintings within the Museum of Art Timisoara by combining historic and artistic information with their personal experiences. I thought this idea of Marius was a fantastic: that people create personal stories around a work of art, thus bringing art closer to young people and not only.
Marius Cornea – Museum curator and educator within the Museum of Art Timisoara – he is the coordinator of this project. Here he is telling stories and actively involving the aged persons while visiting the museum
I was saying “not only” because, as Marius was saying, this project took an unexpected turn and span, that he did not plan or foresee in the beginning. Which proves one more time that if you do something that you believe in, so many opportunities that you haven’t even dreamed of open up. So the high school students that were trained as guides had as audience older people, who shared their stories around the paintings and so the project expanded. Following several presentations in day care centers and asylums for aged people, Marius started working with aged persons ill with Parkinson and Alzheimer. He was organizing activities for them within the museum and also he was training them to become museum guides for other aged people from these centers. So every Tuesday the aged persons ill with Alzheimer take part in different activities within the Art Museum Timisoara, and every Monday and Thursday the aged people ill with Parkinson are trained to become museum guides.
Mrs. Edith Alexa (89 years old), ill with Parkinson, museum guide
This Tuesday Mr Ion Iovescu (66 years old) and Mrs. Edith Alexa (89 years old), both ill with Parkinson, made their debut as museum guides, by telling stories about the paintings of Corneliu Baba (and connecting them with personal experiences) within the Museum of Art Timisoara, to a very special audience: aged people ill with Alzheimer, from a day care center in Timisoara. I saw in their eyes joy, surprise, smiles, playful twinkles, interest.
Aged people, ill with Alzheimer, being involved in the presentation on the paintings of Corneliu Baba
I was very touched by this project and I wanted to tell you about it.
More photos from the event here
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
This event gives me the opportunity to speak of another project that was on my mind for a while. It’s a photo documentary project about the volunteers in Timisoara, because I find it very inspirational to listen/see/gather stories about people who dedicate at least a biot of their time to make life better in the community which they live in. I will come back soon with a decent description of the project, but I wanted to mention it already because then I’m afraid I will postpone it 🙂 What do you think of it?