Painter Neil Shawcross Conducts Assisted Living Service Masterclass
ARTIST Neil Shawcross hosted a unique masterclass in a supportive housing service for tenants with dementia, after being invited by a friend who is staying there with his wife.
Tenants at St Paul’s Court in Lisburn, which is a partnership between Praxis Care, Choice Housing and the South Eastern Health and Social Care Trust, were able to observe the acclaimed painter’s work on two still lifes and hear him explain his techniques.
The artist said he was happy to set up his easel there last week.
“I used to have lunch regularly on a Thursday in my studio on Donegall Pass for my friends,” Mr. Shawcross said.
“A good friend of mine, Brian Green, attended with his wife Patricia. When Brian and Pat came to St. Paul’s Court, they kept in touch.”
Mr. Green asked her to give a talk, but the artist decided to take it a step further by suggesting, “Why just give a talk when I can come and paint for all of you?” “
Karen Ford, services manager at St Paul’s Court, said Mr Green had suggested the artist when working with staff to come up with new activity ideas.
“We have sessions with tenants and some of them involve both our staff and them, offering ideas and suggestions for activities to do,” she said.
“Some of the tenants are avid painters and art lovers, including Brian Green, and he mentioned that he was friends with Neil Shawcross, so we asked him to contact Neil to see if he would be interested in s. ‘to imply.
“Of course Brian reached out to Neil and arranged for him to attend today without our help. We followed up with Neil and he was delighted to be invited and involved.
“This is a fantastic opportunity for tenants as it promotes independence. It was great for Brian to organize this, it gives others the confidence to participate in similar opportunities.
“Activities like this evoke memories of artistic creation for all of the tenants and for Brian very specific memories of being with his friend Neil and all the memories that come with it.”
Neil Shawcross painted two still lifes – one of a cup of tea and the other of a teapot.
“Neil was kind enough to stay to chat with the tenants and walked us to Brian’s house where Brian has several of Neil’s paintings including a custom painting Neil painted exclusively for Brian which included all of the buildings he worked on as a civil engineer before his retirement, ”Ms. Ford said.