Honolulu (KHON2) – The Honolulu Museum of Art is breaking new ground with its “Art for Life” program, designed to engage older adults in the artistic process, fostering social, emotional, and physical well-being. This initiative is part of the museum’s broader Diversity, Equity, Accessibility, and Inclusion endeavor, which aims to challenge the last accepted prejudice—ageism.

‘Art for Life’ has become a reality through a generous $250,000 grant from EA Michelson Philanthropy, focusing on developing programs tailored for museum audiences aged 55 and older as part of its Vitality Arts Project for Art Museums initiative.

The program is set to launch with three 10-week classes commencing on January 11, 2024, and registration opening on November 17, 2023. Aaron Padilla, Director of Learning & Engagement at the Honolulu Museum of Art, explained that Art for Life stands out for several reasons.

“It distinguishes itself by addressing the specific needs and expectations of students aged 55 and older. Drawing from best practices identified by the American Alliance of Museums, the nonprofit Lifetime Arts specializing in creative aging program development, and HoMA’s locally conducted survey along with a century of arts education experience, the program accounts for the physical and cognitive changes that accompany aging. It seeks to challenge stereotypes and misconceptions about older citizens.”

Art for Life offers classes tailored to the preferred days, times, and duration for older students. The curriculum includes exploratory instruction on materials and techniques, opportunities for collaborative projects and studio critiques, and discussions about student work, the museum’s permanent collections, and exhibitions. The classes culminate with an Open House and reception for students to showcase their work and connect with the public.

The Honolulu Museum of Art’s “Art for Life” program is a significant step towards creating a more inclusive, creative, and age-friendly community, encouraging the joy of artistic expression at any age.

For more information and registration, please visit https://honolulumuseum.org or follow Honolulu Museum of Art @honolulumuseum on social media for updates.