September 16, 2021, Peapack, NJ — Matheny has been awarded $62,694.00 in grants from The New Jersey State Council on the Arts. The money is part of more than $35.6 million in grants made by NJSCA to support over 700 of New Jersey’s arts organizations, projects, and artists and also included $7.5 million in Coronavirus Relief Funds – part of Governor Murphy’s economic recovery efforts.
Eileen Murray, Director of the Arts Access Program, said “NJSCA’s tremendous generosity greatly assists Arts Access in our mission to bring the fine arts experience to people with disabilities. New Jersey is fortunate to have such a vibrant and dynamic arts council, and I am personally grateful for their unflagging support.”
Arts Access’ multidisciplinary program offers specialized systems of communication and assistance for individuals with disabilities that enable them to freely express themselves in the arts. Instead of defining those participating in Arts Access by their disabilities, Arts Access enables participants to define themselves by their accomplishments.
The basis for all Arts Access programming is an established method of art facilitation through which individuals with disabilities are enabled to create and perform dramatic and literary works, dance, paintings, digital art, and sculpture. Facilitators are professional NJ artists who receive extensive, ongoing training in Arts Access methodology, program philosophy, and assistive technologies. Matheny’s Arts Access program empowers individuals with disabilities, regardless of economic or other disadvantages, to participate in the arts using innovative facilitation techniques. A wide variety of artistic choices in the visual, literary and performing arts is made available. Virtual facilitation was developed during the pandemic and had become an important component of the program.
Arts Access, now in its 28th year, gives people with developmental disabilities the tools necessary to create fine art. Assisted by professional artist-facilitators, the artists use specialized systems and methodologies that have been designed to enable individuals across the full spectrum of disability to clearly communicate their ideas. The fruits of their creativity – acrylic paintings, digital art, choreography, poetry, plays, essays and more – have been showcased in many venues throughout the tri-state area. To learn more, go to artsaccessprogram.org.