New York City
“For years my illness kept me down. Since I've been brave enough to step away from realism and paint from the rapid slide show in my head, I'm free from the mazes. I believe I've just dipped my toe in the ocean. When I paint these images, I make them real. I can touch them. I make my dreams real. By making my dreams come true through art, I make my dreams come true.”
Lifetime New York City resident, Drew Mulfall, has used his creativity to overcome challenges that life has presented. For many years Drew recognized his artistic talent but focused on other aspects of his life and leaving his creativity undeveloped. Over time Drew reconnected with his creativity with a new understanding of its importance in his life.
Currently, Drew creates his artwork at The Living Museum, which is a sanctuary for many artists living in New York City. Drew began attending The Living Museum in 2005. He describes the transformative impact attending the Museum has had on his life. “This is when I started to make leaps forward in my artwork. I still cycled heavily and could only produce sporadically until about a year and a half ago, when I stabilized better than ever before. There are two main reasons the Museum has helped me with my art, besides Dr. Martin, who co-founded the museum. One is the freedom. Unlike most day programs, there is no structure. We decide. That brings me to point two - the people. It has become an intellectual salon for me and others. Friendships and objective opinions have made a big difference in my work and my life.”
Drew has experimented with many different styles over the years, from realism to impressionism, and most recently painting in the abstract. “When you have zero training, you have to find your own way.” Drew continues “I’ve always had the images but not the courage.” Drew has found that creating non-representational, abstract artwork helps keep him emotionally healthy and balanced. “I love how it [abstract art] drains me emotionally. Gives me a fresh start.”
There is an urgency to Drew’s creativity now. For so long his creativity was unused and as he puts it “I cannot waste any more time. It’s a mad dash to the finish line now.” Drew is excited to join ArtLifting so his work can get out there a little more. When asked about his dreams for the future Drew shares “Good health and some happiness. My art is the most important thing. It’s hard to imagine where it will go.”
ArtLifting champions artists impacted by homelessness or disabilities through the celebration and sale of their artwork. Learn more here.