A new monthly art series – which draws on the experiences of people with Parkinson’s and their carers – launched last month as part of the Framing OFF Through Art initiative.
We spoke to Julie B., the artist behind the initiative’s first piece, about what motivated her to get involved, how art can offer a “release” from symptoms – and why the initiative has given her a new perspective on her mother’s Parkinson’s
Framing OFF Through Art is a monthly art series inspired by the stories of people with Parkinson’s and their carers.
Each piece of art is made by artists with a personal connection to Parkinson’s, who partner up with people living with the condition to create art that symbolises one of their symptoms. The pieces focus on Parkinson’s ‘off’ episodes, which are the periods between treatment when symptoms re-emerge.
Artist Julie Beezy, known as Julie B. – who created the first piece last month – said: “I was honoured to be asked to be a part of this initiative. I am an artist and create pieces that can reflect many different meanings, so it was very special to create a piece that will, hopefully, help someone communicate something so complicated and emotional.”
“My mother has Parkinson’s. She was diagnosed about 10 years ago but keeps a lot of her feelings and symptoms about her diagnosis private. Working on this initiative really opened my eyes to what she experiences and how important communication is – with not only your healthcare team but your family and support system.”
For the initiative, Julie partnered with Steve Peters, who was diagnosed with Parkinson’s in 2012, and his wife and care partner, Leslie. They created ‘Reflections’ – a sculpture inspired by Steve’s journey with his condition.