‘Crayons & Care II’ Art Exhibit To Open At LCCC

Luzerne County Community College will hold an art exhibit “Crayons & Care II” at the LCCC Schulman Gallery at the College’s Campus Center.

The exhibit will feature artwork by the children of Litewska Hospital in Warsaw, Poland. The children’s artwork will be for sale throughout the exhibit and all proceeds will be donated to the Friends of the Litewska Foundation for the hospital’s children’s art program.

This is the second exhibition of paintings from the children of Litewska to be held at LCCC. The exhibit will include approximately 150 pieces of matted or framed art. The first Crayons & Care exhibit held at the College in 2008 raised $2,500 for the children’s hospital and drew one of the largest crowds to an LCCC art exhibit since the opening of the Schulman Gallery.

According to Thomas Pugh, chair of the art exhibit committee, the Litewska Hospital treats children with the most serious medical conditions including cancer, kidney disease, and heart disease. Since the hospital stay for so many children is almost a year, the facility has a fully-functioning school with an art department that has a distinguished reputation. The children’s art classes are therapeutic as well as recreational and provide the patients with some relief from their daily medical treatments.

Pugh, retired Chief Operating Officer of Allied Services and CEO of John Heinz Institute of Rehabilitative Medicine, notes that the John Heinz Institute became involved with the Litewska Hospital through a United States Aid Project in 1995. The Institute has provided training for Polish nurses in the United States and has sent nurses to Warsaw to provide instruction on various topics including the latest techniques in infection control. Through public donations, the John Heinz Institute sends funds to the Litewska Hospital which are used to keep the hospital’s art school open.

Pugh notes that the paintings produced by the children of Litewska Hospital are usually mixed media, very brightly colored, and are signed and include the age of the artist. Some feature scenes from Warsaw or Cracow, and many display traditional Polish symbols such as cranes and bears. “Some pieces are very child like,” Pugh says. “Others are more polished. But all display the motivation of the school to provide some moments of happiness for patients,” he adds. “The exhibit will appeal to those area residents of Polish heritage,” Pugh notes, “but will also be interesting on a pure art basis.”

The exhibit will open with a reception on Saturday, September 14, from 6 to 8 p. m., at the College’s Schulman Gallery. A children’s story hour will be held on Sunday, September 15, from 2 to 3 p. m. Both the reception and story hour are open to the public. The gallery will remain open on Sunday until 6 p. m. Polish Christmas cards and note cards with pictures painted by the children of Litewska Hospital will be for sale at the opening reception.

The exhibit is free and open to the public and will be open Monday through Friday, from 9 a. m. to 5 p. m., through Thursday, October 17.