Clarke University’s Quigley Gallery presents The Awakenings Project, an outreach effort to help persons with psychiatric disorders awaken to their inner selves through art in all forms. The Awakenings Project exhibit will have an opening reception on Sunday, October 13, from 2 to 3:30 p.m. It is free and open to the public. There will be light refreshments. Some of the artists will be on hand to meet the public and talk about their work. The exhibit will stay up through October 31, in honor of Mental Illness Awareness week, the first full week in October.
The Awakenings Project was first conceived in 1996 when Glen Ellyn, Ill., resident Robert Lundin observed that many “consumers” of mental health services were also artists. He organized a group show at a National Alliance on Mental Illness-Illinois Conference, expected maybe a dozen artists to participate in the first exhibit, but more than 50 were on hand. Needing help, he enlisted Irene O’Neill as co-director, and several other artists as a production crew. Since then, the organization has grown tremendously. The studio moved to Elgin, Ill., in July 2008.