The Avivo ArtWorks artist talk at 900 Hennepin originally scheduled for April 16 is canceled.
During this talk, Avivo ArtWorks will celebrate the artist Gary R. Melquist and his solo exhibition. Gary is a longtime member of the program’s Open Studio group. Gary will talk about his colorful art, discussing his inspirations and process. Additional speakers will share about his prolific energy and his commitment to community and challenging mental health stigma.
About the artist
Gary R. Melquist has been creating visual art since 2011 when he became a participant of the Avivo ArtWorks program. He didn’t know he had the ability to draw until he was 65 years old, first starting with pencil drawings. Since establishing himself as an artist he has shown his work with People Incorporated, Courage Kenny, and Avivo.
Art has helped Gary enjoy life more than he ever dreamed possible. Art has been therapeutic for him. His life was impacted by severe depression and isolation, beginning in his teens, and he didn’t expect life to be so good in his elder years. Gary is a mental health advocate, having received a Stigma Buster award in 1994 from the National Alliance on Mental Illness of Minnesota. He’s also received recognition for his creative writing. Themes he explores have been mostly related to mental health, showing the range of emotions he has felt. Gary is a long-time resident of Minneapolis.