CATA NEWS Summer 2018

Page 1

summer 2018


You bring Creativity to Life!

Community at its most powerful if you've never been to a cata art show, you don't know what you're missing "a beautiful exhibit that shows the power of the arts and the freedom and dignity it provides for true expression."

p CATA artist Julie Raymond (BCArc) sees her work on display at the Clark Art Institute.

You walk into a room, and everywhere you look there’s colorful, vibrant art: paintings, drawings, prints, collages—all beautifully framed and hung. And what’s more, there are people everywhere—of all ages, backgrounds, and abilities—mingling, smiling, taking it all in together. This is community at its most powerful: an incredible spirit of inclusion you can only find at I Am a Part of Art, CATA’s Annual Art Show.

This year you brought life-changing arts workshops to hundreds of people with disabilities. Students at Pittsfield Public High School who​developed new skills in watercolor and expressionist painting. A​rtists at United Cerebral Palsy who ​worked together to build a stunning clay tile mosaic. Survivors at Brain Injury Association of Massachusetts who ​ channeled their artistry into illuminating monoprints.

i am a part of art brings people together from across the community to celebrate our artists and enjoy their work.

For these CATA artists and so many more, you brought creativity to life. ​Our Annual Art Show is your chance to see the impact you’ve made ​ first-hand. And our CATA artists will be there to show off their work in person!

Art lovers and community leaders. CATA artists, their families and caregivers. Students and friends. All showing their support for a community where every person’s contributions matter.

Join us for I Am a Part of Art—and get ready to be inspired and transformed.


mark your calendar i am a part of art

lichtenstein center for the arts

28 Renne Avenue · Pittsfield, MA Reception: Thursday, July 12 from 5-7pm Exhibit: July 5 - July 31, 2018 clark art institute lunder center at stone hill

227 South Street · Williamstown, MA Meet the Artists: Thursday, August 2 from 1-2pm Exhibit: July 1 - August 19, 2018

buy cata art and bring inclusion home

all events and exhibits are free and open to the public

photo: Richard Migot

Did we mention that every work of CATA art is available for sale?

p CATA artist Marshall Russell (Leander House) and supporters Stephanie and Bob Gittleman mingle by Marshall’s sculpture at the Lichtenstein Center for the Arts.

sponsored in part by: Berkshire Life Charitable Foundation FRAMES ON WHEELS

When you buy CATA artwork, you provide a commission to the individual artist and support yearround programs for artists with disabilities. These beautiful pieces sell quickly, so come ready to make your pick! Opening night is an exciting flurry of art lovers vying for their own unique CATA painting, drawing, or collage. Make sure your favorite piece doesn’t go home with someone else!

Fund for Williamstown a fund of

Berkshire Taconic Community Foundation


p CATA artist Sam Pelletz (Oakdale) poses proudly with her artwork at the Lichtenstein Center for the Arts.

for artists unable to use a paintbrush, you make art possible photo: A.R.T. [Ben Hillman & Company] 2018

your support reveals talents that might have remained hidden. Katrina wears a laser on her head. David wears one on his hand. Cathy uses a ruler. With these tools and the aid of a trained “tracker”—a person who acts as the artist’s hands—each of these artists is able to create works of art through Artistic Realization Technologies (A.R.T.). Developed by artist Tim Lefens, this innovative process gives full artistic control to people with significant physical disabilities who are not able to hold or manipulate a paintbrush. Since 2005, CATA has provided hundreds of A.R.T. workshops, allowing dozens of artists to transcend their physical limitations and reveal their creative spirits. Through A.R.T., the artist controls every aspect of the creative process: the size and orientation of the canvas, the color and thickness of the paint, the tool and speed with which it’s applied to the canvas. Using a laser pointer or by plotting points with a ruler, the artist directs a tracker until their creative vision emerges. 4

“I follow my imagination,” says CATA artist Katrina Couture. Each week, Katrina meets with her tracker Stefanie Weber at BFAIR in North Adams. Using a laser, Katrina shows Stefanie exactly how to place each brushstroke on the canvas. “Stefanie goes over here, over there. She runs around and chases the light, wherever I want to put it.” It’s clear to Stefanie what these workshops have given to Katrina. “A.R.T. offers a way for artists like Katrina to communicate something that would otherwise go unsaid or unknown.”

"cata has given me my art. i never knew i had this in me." “Painting helps me get my emotions out on paper, rather than holding them inside,” says CATA artist Cathy Crofut. “I’m happy when I paint and

t David Gardner (BCArc) creates vibrant paintings through CATA’s A.R.T. workshops.

I’m proud of my accomplishments.” Cathy’s work has been privately commissioned and displayed at the Norman Rockwell Museum, Berkshire Museum and Clark Art Institute. Last fall, she was awarded a prestigious Governor’s citation for a painting exhibited at the Massachusetts State House in Boston. Because of your support, our community is able to experience the talents of these artists whose abilities might have otherwise remained hidden. For CATA artists like Carol Neuhaus, the impact has been profound. “CATA has given me my art,” she says. “I never knew I had this in me.” p Katrina Couture (BFAIR) poses with her artwork at the Clark Art Institute.

As a program requiring one-on-one support, A.R.T. is one of CATA’s most expensive to deliver. We rely on generous contributions from our supporters to sustain this work. It’s because of your generosity that artists like Katrina, Cathy, David, and Carol are able to express their creative talents.

you make partnerships thrive

photo: A.R.T. [Ben Hillman & Company] 2018

Your support fuels partnerships with organizations across Berkshire and Columbia counties so we can reach as many artists with disabilities as possible. Partners in our Annual Art Show include:

p Cathy Crofut (BCArc, right) has worked with her A.R.T. tracker Pat Hogan for over 12 years.

Berkshire Family & Individual Resources (BFAIR) • Berkshire County Arc (BCArc) Berkshire Service Group • Blue Q Brain Injury Association of Massachusetts Cadmus • Central Berkshire Regional School District • Columbia County Arc (Coarc) High Spirit Community Farm • Leander House Lee Middle & High School • Lenox Memorial Middle & High School • Oakdale Residences Oak Lodge • Pittsfield Public Schools Riverbrook Residence • Stanton Home United Cerebral Palsy of Berkshire County

you're creating a movement cata donor mitch nash believes in the power of creativity "cata isn't just an organization. it's a revolution."

Mitch Nash has seen first-hand what CATA means for people with disabilities. For the last 15 years, Mitch has made CATA’s workshops available for his employees with disabilities at Blue Q, the funky gift manufacturer headquartered in Pittsfield, MA that he founded with his brother Seth. “When CATA came in, it was like an epiphany. Everyone seemed to be benefitting, even the people who weren’t involved in the workshops themselves.” For people with disabilities, the effect has been monumental. “The lift that these folks get from CATA is profound. CATA helps them be happier and more well adjusted. There is a lingering effect from the workshops—they feel better and their self-esteem is stronger, too.” Knowing how CATA impacts this population has fueled Mitch’s support as a donor. “Everyone needs access to the arts, and the benefits to that are so deep. Giving to CATA just seems like a common sense thing to do.” 6

p CATA donors Mitch and Caitlin Nash at a CATA art exhibit.

“CATA is offering people with disabilities the opportunity to learn and to grow. If you’re not creating something, then you’re not learning something. And creativity and learning—and happiness—are so intertwined.”

"When cata came in, it was like an epiphany." Mitch sees the impact of donor support in the lives of the artists every day. And it’s important to Mitch that they be seen as exactly that: artists. “There’s one artist named Tim whose stuff just blows me away. He has great creative chops. We have a blind person on staff, and Pat Hogan [a CATA Faculty Artist] has enabled her to have tactile experiences that have really helped her.

"everyone needs access to the arts, and the benefits to that are so deep. giving to cata just seems like a common sense thing to do." It isn’t just one or two artists that are impacted, though. They all have really transformational experiences.”

photo: Richard Migot

So what has CATA meant to our wider community? “CATA is like a movement. You’re not just an organization, you’re trying to create a revolution. When people come out of CATA’s events, they see just how wide and deep the impact really is.”

be like elaine & rich: include cata in your will!

If you’d like to support CATA’s life-changing arts workshops for hundreds of people with disabilities, visit

By including CATA in your will, trust, or estate plans, you create a lasting legacy that changes lives for hundreds of people with disabilities in our community.

photo: Richard Migot

Legacy gifts allow CATA to bring creative opportunities to future generations of people with disabilities, regardless of their income or financial restrictions.

p Tim Schnopp (Blue Q) shows off his artwork at CATA’s art opening at the Lichtenstein.

No matter your age or income, a gift in your will is an easy and powerful way to make a difference. For information on CATA’s bequest 7 program, call us at 413-528-5485.

you put cata artists in print our first-ever art & poetry book is here, and it's all thanks to you! You Can’t Replace Yourself is a window into the lyrical and deeply felt work of writers and artists with disabilities. Each page of this book pairs a powerful poem by a CATA writer with vivid artwork by a CATA artist. Visit to order your copy and see the incredible creativity that you brought to life!

You Can’t Replace Yourself was made possible by generous contributions from CATA supporters, including underwriting from Stephanie and Bob Gittleman.

save the date! cata's annual poetry reading returns to the mount You make it possible for CATA writers like Tyler Baronas (pictured) to discover their poetic voice. Join us for a dynamic celebration of their work at our Annual Poetry Reading at The Mount. September 12, 2018 – 5:30-7:30pm The Mount, Edith Wharton’s Home · Lenox, MA This event is FREE, though RSVP is required. RSVP to or call 413-528-5485.

Stephen Shatz, President Emily Rechnitz, Vice President Heather Wells Heim, Vice President Ira Grossman, Treasurer Diane Prusha, Faculty Representative Cory Carlotto, Artist Representative

Sandra Baron · Kathryn Burdsall Deborah Caiola · Beverly Hosokawa David Hosokawa · Melissa Lydon Neal Maxymillian · Sharon Mozian Rich Petrino · Elaine Radiss · David Rice Linda Russell · Ben Silberstein · John Whalan

40 Railroad Street, Suite 6 · Gt. Barrington, MA 01230 · · 413-528-5485 ·



photo: Julie McCarthy

Margaret Keller, Executive Director Dawn Lane, Program & Artistic Director Katie Clarke, Administrative Director Jeff Gagnon, Program Manager Kara Smith, Program Coordinator & CATAdirect Studio Manager Sarah Carpenter, Development Manager Chris Watford, Communications Coordinator JD Logan, Administrative Associate Sandra Newman, Founder