Art of the Wish
An exhibition celebrating the wishes of elders and protecting the interests of those whose voices have not been heard or heeded.
May 12, 2022
Leedy-Voulkos Art Center
Kansas City, Missouri
What would you wish for the world?
That’s the question two Kansas City artists, Andy Newcom and Marn Jensen, asked more than 200 older adults across the country. Then, from their conversations, they created works of art depicting these wishes for the world.
This spring event features more than 50 pieces of art expressing the lived experiences of older adults conveyed in the form of their wishes for the world which underscores the Center’s role in protecting the interests of those whose voices have not been heard or heeded.
Honorary Co-Chairs Rob Flores and Sue Seidler Nerman are thrilled to serve as Honorary Co-Chairs for ART of the WISH. Rob is President of Puente Marketing, which he founded in 2003 to focus on the growing Hispanic market. Puente uses its expertise to reach the Hispanic customer in respectful and culturally relevant ways.
Sue is a dedicated philanthropist to arts and Jewish community organizations throughout Greater Kansas City. She currently chairs the Board of Trustees of the Kansas City Art Institute. The Nerman family contributed the lead gift to fund the Nerman Museum of Contemporary Art at Johnson County Community College.
Sue Seidler Nerman
"I wish people would smile back."
Stormy— jokester, storyteller, ex-grade-school drama teacher, everyone’s friend
We’ve known Stormy for a long time, and she’s filled our lives with so much fun.
When you meet her, you are changed. You feel lighter, happier, and sillier. Her stories make you laugh so hard you can’t wait to hear them. Even for the one-hundredth time.
Those lucky enough to call her “friend” (and many do), experience that signature “Stormy sunshine” that spills out effortlessly. So, when she recounted this story to us, it caught our attention:
“This morning, I smiled and said ‘hello’ to eleven people. Not one person smiled back. I wish people would just smile back.”
This ripped out our hearts because Stormy has been putting smiles on faces for 98 years. Without. Even. Trying.
So, if anyone deserves a smile, it’s her.
When you look closely at vintage photos, you rarely see a smile on the subject’s face because they had to sit still for a long time as the photograph was taken. These blank stares and stoic faces represent how we might appear to people who really need you to smile at them. This piece challenges us to be that “twelfth person” for Stormy— for everyone— and always smile back.
"I wish our most vulnerable were cared for."
Lynn— corporate consultant, friend, compassionate daughter
Lynn has experienced a great deal in her life–divorce, addiction, the loss of a parent, the loss of a job and cancer. She is not uncommon in these trials; but what makes Lynn uncommon is how she has taken her pain and turned it into the beautiful compassion for those she meets each and every day.
As Lynn lovingly cares for her elderly mom (who resides in a memory care facility), she takes the weakness of vulnerability and turns it into strength as she reaches out to those in need. She is a true alchemist.
This crushed piece of fencing was pulled from a local junkyard. It immediately caught my attention as I started sifting through piles of debris. I simply took the piece home and hung it on my wall and as I started to add more stuff to it, I realized that its beauty was in its simplicity. In the end, I decided to add a little bit of knotted string and aim a light on it to create dramatic shadows. Aren’t all of our lives made of shadow and light?
I’ve found that when something is utterly and completely broken down, it can come back to life in another shape, another form–becoming more precious and more beautiful than before.
A Unique Evening in the Crossroads
The ART of the WISH exhibition will debut at the Center’s 2022 Annual Event, with two sessions to experience it:
May 12, 2022
- 5:30 to 7:00 PM with hors d’oeuvres
- 7:30 to 9:00 PM with dessert
We invite you to become a sponsor with a gift of $1,000 or more.
Individual tickets may be purchased at $100 per person.
Note: Please indicate which session you wish to attend in the Comments section of the Registration.
Perhaps you cannot attend but wish to make a donation? Of course, we welcome your support.
Please indicate in the Comments section if you cannot attend.
Repurposing old objects is central to Andy and Marn’s art and reflects the Center for Practical Bioethics’ core values:
- That all persons have intrinsic worth, and
- The importance of protecting the interests of those
whose voices have not been heard or heeded.
Exhibition artwork, accompanied by narrative background, consists of a variety of media, from mixed media, photography and assemblage to sculpture, fiber, encaustic painting and drawing.
Sponsorships include reservations at nearby restaurants for tables of four to ten for either the early or later session.
Your sponsorship helps in 3 ways:
- Supports ethics in health and healthcare
- Support restaurants in the Crossroads
- Supports the role of arts and humanities in society
Volunteer Steering Committee
Alan Edelman, Chair
Sue Seidler Nerman
We can’t predict what our public health environment will be like in May. In the meantime, we have and will continue to make your safety a top priority at this event.
- Two sessions will help to prevent overcrowding. We anticipate a maximum of 300 people at each session.
- Depending on circumstances at the time, masks and/or vaccinations may be required for entry.
Thursday, September 21, 2023
You can hear me, but are you listening? Listening to the Patient’s Voice
Dr. Jeff Goldenberg and Naomi Kirtner, are the parents of Talia Goldenberg, who died tragically at age 23 following spinal surgery. Talia, her physician father and her mother pleaded with doctors and medical staff, urging them to recognize that Talia couldn’t breathe. Talia’s parents have a powerful story to share.