Creating Community: Paint Therapy Uncorked
Emma Highfill | Photographer
She wants to not only get people interested in the arts who never were before, but also give them an opportunity to create art for themselves.
Margie opened Paint Therapy Uncorked at 5130 SW 29th Street almost eight years ago because she wanted a place for people to have something exciting to do right here in town. In her interactive art lounge, people can connect and create in a fun and positive atmosphere. Painters are encouraged to bring their own food and drink to create their own “party.”
“It is not about the art. It’s about socializing and having fun while you are doing it,” Margie said.
Paint Therapy Uncorked offers many weekly public painting events limited to participants 16 years of age and over. The studio also offers team building events and private parties with no age restrictions. Unplugged Family Day is open every Sunday for people of all ages. The canvas, paint, brushes, and aprons are provided to help painters create their own masterpieces. Amazing local artists are also there to help every step of the way.
The studio brings in people from all walks of life. Margie has seen some people come in with a bad attitude and scowl, but have a great time and leave with a smile. Her favorite memory so far was a pig farmer from Iowa who was excited about how well he did.
“I love to see the change in the people and how proud they are of themselves and their artwork,” Margie said. “They are able to create something they never thought that they could.”
Margie believes art has the power to create a stronger and healthier community. Art can positively affect people’s lives emotionally, spiritually, physically and mentally. Even those experiencing grief or dealing with a chronic illness can find peace and solace, if only for a few hours.
In the spirit of community wellness, Margie and her staff paint with residents in assisted living facilities around the area. Art can be a fulfilling activity for seniors suffering from disease, including Alzheimer’s. It can increase their quality of life and become a means of expression even after other types of communication start to fail.
“Painting is a calming activity for people and opens them up to self- expression,” Margie said. “They don’t think about their problems once they start painting. While they are creating art, everything else goes away. Art really is therapy.”