Art and Institutions
Art and Institutions
Centerleder Lindevang - Denmark
Lindevang is a residential home at Loegumkloster, Denmark.
It is the home for about 50 elderly residents who are no longer able to take care of themselves in spite of daily help from home care. Lindevang has 60 employees and a number of volunteers who attend the home every day. Anne Andersen is the center leader of the institution and describes her collaboration with the artist Else Pia Erz as follows: The combination art and residential home came up when I collaborated with an architect who was a specialist in old peoples' perception of colours and light. The architect was in charge of the colouring of the home. And thanks to him Lindevang appears very unconventional, in many different colours. The colouring provides warmth and comfort to the home, but it also shows the residents how to find their way. Dementia and poor eyesight weaken the elderly people's ability to find their bearings. The colours can help our residents to be more self-reliant, because they can find their way when they look at the colours.
Having admired Else Pia Erz' art for a long time, I contacted her. I thought that many of our residents would be very fond of her paintings, depicting the landscape of the tidal area (Vadehavet) which they all know so well. Many of our residents have had a much closer relationship to this area than the young people of today.
Else Pia was instantly interested in the commission. Her idea was that she wanted to create a consistency of the colours in the room, and at the same time give the residents experiences and joy in their daily life.
Else Pia made a plan and together we started hanging up pictures and asking the residents what they thought of them. We had many fine discussions. Some paintings were immediately accepted; others had to be replaced with a different motif. Their wishes were granted as far as possible, for there were many different opinions. The residents had some experiences by being involved in the choice of pictures. Else Pia listened to them with great interest, and together they created something quite unique.
I know that our residents have often talked about Else Pia's paintings, and I see how proudly they show visitors around to see all of Else Pia's pictures. We also have many guests who visit us just to see our special colouring and her art in perfect harmony.
Some of our residents are dysfunctional because of their dementia; nevertheless they study the paintings and suddenly comment on them. Art stimulates our residents and stimulates their minds. One of them suddenly one day exclaimed," Has she (the artist) forgotten to paint the legs of the starlings, I wonder?" and "Where will they fly to?"
This resident would rarely say anything at all.
Art gives the residents, the relatives and staff something to talk about, something to enjoy, something to become absorbed in, and may be something that reminds us of trips to the tidal area (Vadehavet).
We all feel privileged by having a wonderful home and a wonderful place of work.
Therefore I will strongly recommend other institutions to include art and colouring in their plans for building projects.
Director of Lindevang, Anne Andersen, Denmark.
Else Pia Martinsen Erz
Se more about the project: www.galerie-erz.dk under EXPO & 2011