12 Days of Giving: Day 4: Nick Morse, Billy Megargel, and Grace Goad December 04, 2015 13:03 4 Comments

Happy 4th Day of Giving!

Today’s featured artists are Nick Morse, Grace Goad and Billy Megargel. For every purchase of their artwork and/or products, ArtLifting will donate one art-related toy to a child in need! Giving, not receiving, brings true holiday joy. For the 12 days of giving you have the opportunity to give back to both an artist and a child in need! 55% of every sale goes directly to the artist!

 

Our three featured artists today all create art from a unique perspective that allows them the creativity to make artwork that expresses their feelings and hopes without words. Autism is a spectrum of behavioral disorders that greatly affects the ability to communicate and respond to social cues. The sensory system is often greatly affected as well. The world is often overwhelming and scary to someone with autism, which makes the beauty and openness of these three artists’ artwork all the more inspiring.

Nick Morse, 26, is a colorful abstract painter who is on the autistic spectrum. He exhibits his art annually at the Cambridge Arts Council's Open Studios, at sites in Cambridge, Massachusetts such as Club Passim and ZuZu, and at events for the nonprofit Music Cures. Nick’s work uses a unique combination of color and brush stroke patterns to constantly surprise viewers. His work has the soft quality that many modern abstract painters lack in their work today and viewers greatly enjoy his work for their perfect simplicity and quiet presence.

Billy Megargel, age 25, lives with Autism and has barely uttered a word his entire life. Rather than speaking, Billy uses an arsenal of tools to create expressive modern paintings that command attention. His work differs from Nick in their loud and explosiveness. His work reveals a sense of movement and activity bordering on chaos. Their appeal perhaps is Billy’s balancing act of such chaos with control, as his work always exude intent and purpose. Billy’s work intrigues viewers as it is the most perfect view into Billy’s mind and perspective on the world as it is his main form of communication.

Grace Goad was diagnosed with moderately severe autism, intellectual disabilities, and severe speech/language disorder at age two (in 1997) and began painting when she was four. Because autism subtly affects the muscle tone of portions of her grasp, her work is largely abstract. Yet, her advanced use of color and composition has been lauded and featured on the 2007 autism episode of ABC’s “The View;” on Al Jeezera America; on the cover of The American Journal of Psychiatry, among other magazine covers; on the cover of the book, Making Sense of Autism, and in The Art of Autism: 2012 Edition, as well as numerous local and national newspapers, magazines, and other television and online media and books.

Grace’s artwork reveals a mastery of both color and composition. Her artwork shows a depth of emotion that helps make her bright abstract art stand out from other similar artists. Grace’s maturity in technique and skill gives her pieces a unique narrative dimension and allows her work to stand on their own as a marker of her personality and story. Grace, in her art, hopes to bring attention to the fact that while she may have this significant challenge it makes her art all the more significant because it shows that art is a window to the beauty and potential of people with disabilities.

While autism inhibits verbal communication and expression, brain imaging studies show that many autistic individuals have superior mental imagery and visual thinking skills as compared to non-autistic individuals. Engaging in visual activities such as art has been shown to help autistic individuals express themselves and gain both confidence and independence.