Exhibit Celebrating the Wishes of Elders Evokes Strong Emotions

Exhibit Celebrating the Wishes of Elders Evokes Strong Emotions

If you’ve lived in or around Kansas City long enough, you’ve probably heard of Mary Carol Garrity and Nell Hill’s, the home décor and furniture shop she founded in 1981 in an old bank building in her hometown of Atchison, Kansas.

Naming the shop after her maternal grandmother, Nell Hill, may hint at the roots of Mary Carol’s emotional and profound response to Wishes for the World, an exhibition shown privately at Hallmark in 2017.

“When I went in there,” said Mary Carol, “it was shock and awe, and I am so excited that the public is going to have the opportunity to experience it and, at the same time, benefit the Center for Practical Bioethics.

“I felt like the Mary Carol that went in there came out totally changed.”

Art of the Wish

Art of the Wish, like the predecessor exhibit, celebrates the wishes of elders.

  • I wish our most vulnerable were cared for.
  • I wish every home had a piano. Music fills your life with color
  • I wish people wouldn’t care about material things. It’s just stuff.
  • I wish everyone had a good, dry martini within reach.
  • I wish people would smile back.

The artists, Andy Newcom and Marn Jenson, asked older adults across the country what they would wish for themselves, loved ones and the world and created more than 50 works of art depicting those wishes.

The art and accompanying stories, which will be exhibited at the Leedy-Voulkos Art Gallery in the Kansas City Crossroads from March through May 2022, give voice and expression to those who tend not to be heard or heeded.

The community can tour the exhibit, meet the artists and Mary Carol at a benefit event for the Center for Practical Bioethics on May 12, 2022. Event sponsors choose whether their guests attend the 5:30 PM session (featuring hors d’oeuvres) or 7:30 PM session of the exhibition

The Center for Practical Bioethics raises and responds to ethical issues in health and healthcare. Proceeds from the event provide services that help patients, families and providers make healthcare decisions and support projects and programs to make healthcare more equitable and ethical for everyone.

Vision to Action

“I was kind of stunned by what I felt leaving the exhibit at Hallmark,” said Mary Carol, who in response ‘adopted’ two elderly women in nursing homes who didn’t have other visitors.

“We all know that everyone has a story they never have the chance to tell, but it took very special artists to bring that to light, and I’m just so excited that people from all walks of life will have the opportunity to experience what I did and support the important work of the Center for Practical Bioethics.”

Click here to learn more about Art of the Wish.

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