A group from Betty Ann’s Memory Café visited the Museum on Tuesday, October 17, 2023, to participate in Art Can, a free program that offers accessible art experiences to adults living with dementia and their caregivers. After the group conversation, participants were invited to explore the galleries individually and continue to connect with others through art making.

Memory Café is a monthly gathering of individuals experiencing memory loss who gather in a welcoming, safe, and supportive environment to participate in various activities, from viewing art to making music.

The Museum’s manager of Museum accessibility, Margie Makowski, had visited Betty Ann’s in

Sam Gilliam (American, born 1933), Element, 2008, acrylic on birch. Gift of Sam Gilliam, 2018.

Sam Gilliam (American, born 1933), Element, 2008, acrylic on birch. Allentown Art Museum: Gift of Sam Gilliam, 2018.

September and created watercolor paintings inspired by Sam Gilliam’s Element with participants. The group then came to visit the Museum and see the painting in person.

Since Art Can relaunched in March 2023, the Museum has hosted 70 visitors from the following facilities:

We also have worked with individuals and caregivers living at home.

“Instead of focusing on the things that a person with dementia may not be able to do anymore,” says Margie, “Art Can celebrates the abilities of each person and creates a welcoming space to socially connect, be yourself, and honor the fact that aging is a part of life.”

To learn more about Art Can and schedule a visit, contact Margie Makowski at mmakowski@allentownartmuseum.org