Disabled Artists Unite To Create A Moving, Canadian Art Story

By Mouth and Foot Painting Artists of Canada
Published: Tuesday, Apr. 17, 2012 – 5:17 am

TORONTO, April 17, 2012 /PRNewswire/ – Today, the Mouth and Foot Painting Artists (MFPA) launched Canvassing the Country: A Moving, Canadian Art Story, an ambitious, national collaboration of disabled artists across Canada who share the determination to overcome physical adversity and use art to help achieve financial independence.

Over the next six months, selected MFPA artists across Canada will work together on a single canvas that will travel the country in anticipation and support of September’s Self-Help Awareness Week.

Each artist will paint a regional Canadian scene that serves as a source of personal inspiration.

The canvas will begin its journey the week of April 16, on the west coast in British Columbia and will travel across Canada throughout the spring and summer reaching artists in provinces including Alberta, Ontario, Quebec and Nova Scotia.

“This campaign has a lot of meaning for our organization,” says James Parkins, MFPA Canada. “It’s an opportunity to showcase the talent of our artists, while highlighting the very important themes of hard work, perseverance and independence. We hope the final product will serve as a national symbol of what can be achieved in the face of adversity.”

MFPA will donate the final canvas as a gift to the people of Canada.

Mouth and Foot Painting Artists paint with brushes held in their mouths or feet as a result of a disability sustained at birth or through an accident or illness that prohibits them from using their hands.

MFPA is not a charity but a unique, international, for-profit association wholly owned and run by disabled artists to help them meet their financial needs.
The revenue generated by the sale of products, such as desk calendars and greetings cards, reproduced from their original artworks, provides the artists with the commercial structure to support themselves financially.

“I’ve been a member of the Mouth and Foot Painting Artists for 20 years and it has changed my life,” says Susie Matthias, MFPA Full Member, and one of the artists participating in the painting. “This organization has not only enabled me to gain independence by helping me earn a monthly income, but it’s also been a great support system for me. I hope that this shared art piece will inspire others facing similar challenges to make a difference in their own lives.”

The creative process will also be captured along the way, as each artist will document their experience on video as they receive and work on their portion of the canvas. Over the coming months, this video footage will be shared online at: http://www.pitchengine.com/mfpacanada and will be updated as the canvas travels so MFPA fans, customers and media can follow the canvas from coast to coast and watch as the story evolves.

About the MFPA

The MFPA has been operating in Canada since 1961 and is a member of the International Association of Mouth and Foot Painting Artists. There are currently 14 disabled artists working in Canada and over 750 others around the world. For more information about the MFPA, to purchase product, or to view a full list of products available, visit www.mfpacanada.com.

Reproduced from http://www.sacbee.com/2012/04/17/4420013/disabled-artists-unite-to-create.html