Friday, December 11, 2009

5 Quick Reads About Art and Aging...

Art and Aging...are the very core of CAAN.
As you spend these last days of December reviewing 2009
and begin thinking about what 2010 may hold for you,
here are 5 interesting articles to read...
  1. For some Aging accomplishments, read CAAN Board Member Judith Zausner's blog post about When Creative Success Comes Later in Life.
  2. Intersted in Aging creatively? Read about Ellen McGowan, an 85 year old sculptor here.
  3. About teaching Art...have you ever thought of compiling a Teaching Artist's Wish List? The Association of Teaching Artists has one here. Take a look and share your thoughts on it.
  4. Worried about your Art income--that you are the only teaching artist who is struggling? Read this New York Times article and know that you are not alone.
  5. Work on improving your 2010 Art income now! Go to Alyson B Stanfield's ArtBizBlog and read Art Marketing Action: Hone Your Artist Statement.
Happy Holidays and Be Creative!
Photo by eqqman

Monday, November 23, 2009

Enter Our Logo Contest!

It's time for CAAN to get a new logo! We invite you--yes, you--to design one. You'll find the entry form and CAAN Logo Contest guidelines here. (This link will take you to Click on either "download" or "preview" to access the PDF.)

We look forward to receiving wonderful, creative and unique logos to select from. The CAAN Board will choose the winning logo this December and it will appear on all Creative Arts & Aging Network flyers, newsletters, blog, emails--well, everything!

Now, read the guidelines and go design a logo!

Friday, November 6, 2009

Stephan Novelli: My Life as an Actor

Listen to . . . Stephen Novelli
Thursday, November 12, 2009
11:00 a.m.
Skyline Room, 4th Floor
1901 Vine Street, Philadelphia

Do you have to live in Los Angeles or New York to make it as a professional actor? Not always. Since 1974, Stephen Novelli has been acting and directing as a member of the People's Light & Theater Company in Malvern, PA.

During his presentation, Stephen will discuss the joys--and limitations of being a professional actor in Greater Philadelphia, share some of his best stories from his 35 years on the stage and, of course, Stephen will perform for his audience!

FREE event. Call 215.686.5331 for more information.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

How Can Cultural Organizations Build Strong Audience Connections?

Research into Action: Pathways to New Opportunities, the Cultural Alliance's recent research report, shares how the Philadelphia area's diverse population engages with the arts and how the "focus needs to be on engaging people in a meaningful and personal experience." Find out more about the Research into Action here. Then . . .
. . . join the Breakfast Club on Wednesday, October 14 to discuss the Research into Action Report. In small groups there will be moderated discussions of the Implications sections as well as one main chapter of your choice - Programming, Increasing Access or Marketing.

Philaculture is the website of the Greater Philadelphia Cultural Alliance, a nonprofit association committed to making Greater Philadelphia one of the foremost creative regions in the world. The site contains news, events,tools, and resources designed to help users get the most out of the Cultural Alliance's programs and services.

Thursday, September 17, 2009


I apologize that, as a subscriber to CAAN's blog, you received 2 posts of seemingly random photos with no information. Chalk it up to a multitasking mistake!
Disclaimer: No wine was harmed
in the making of this post.
~ Mary Catherine

(oops) wine
Originally uploaded by
r3v cls

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Rockstars are Ageless

"Out of the way son, and give me that guitar…”

Thursday, October 22
5:30-8:00 pm
Philadelphia Senior Center

Join Generation Appreciation Philadelphia for a screening of the award-winning documentary Young@Heart, a film about an elder vocal group from Northampton, Massachusetts that has earned an international reputation for their unique interpretations of songs by Sonic Youth, The Ramones, and The Clash.

Check out the documentary trailer (persevere through the brief commercial and enjoy a wonderfully unique experience).

The screening will be followed by a discussion led by Meaghan Brown, President of the Creative Arts and Aging Network, on the importance of engaging older adults in intergenerational arts programming though out the city. Audience members will be encouraged to capitalize on the energy and enthusiasm of older Philadelphians, an essential part of forging an Age-friendly Philadelphia.

RSVP by Thursday, October 8th to
Kate Clark at or 215-765-9000 x5072
The Chorus. This isn’t some teenage garage band attacking the classic punk rock songbook — the Young@Heart Chorus is comprised of 22 senior citizens whose average age is 80, and under director Bob Cilman they’ve gained a degree of fame for their enthusiastic a cappella renditions of well-known Rock & Roll tunes.

Filmmaker Stephen Walker spent several weeks with the members of the Young@Heart Chorus as they rehearsed for their annual concert in Northampton, and the documentary offers a look at their rigorous rehearsal process, the background of several members, and their efforts to stay active and think positive, even as their friends succumb to old age. Produced for British television, Young @ Heart was screened in competition at the 2007 Los Angeles Film Festival.

Young@Heart will be performing in NYC at St. Ann’s Warehouse from April 20-May 2, 2010.

Meaghan Brown is the President of the Creative Arts and Aging Network, and is the Director of Adult Day Care Services for Mid County Senior Services in Broomall. A graduate of Saint Joseph’s University with a Masters Degree in Gerontology, Meaghan is committed to providing opportunities for adults of all ages to participate in arts and cultural programs in their community. Prior to her work in the Philadelphia region, Meaghan created an accessibility program for the National Gallery of Art and spent several years working with low-income older adults in Tucson, Arizona. Meaghan is a Generation Appreciation Philadelphia Steering Committee member.

Philadelphia Senior Center is located at 509 S Broad St, between Lombard and South Streets. Founded in 1949, Philadelphia Senior Center has been serving the region’s older adults for over half a century. The Center is the largest in Pennsylvania and the third oldest in the country. Over 8,000 senior citizens are served annually: those who come into the Center and those who are homebound.

Monday, August 24, 2009

We're on Facebook!

Follow us on Facebook!
Join the Creative Arts and Aging Network Group to follow CAAN events, network with other CAAN members, and discuss all things "arts and aging!"

"Creativity Communicates"

Clay artist Barbara Hanselman states, "Creativity communicates." In this video, Barbara demonstrate making basic beads in ceramic clay. It's hard to believe the beads one can create with a coil of clay and some textural enhancements! Barbara made this video while teaching older adults at Lutheran Settlement in Philadelphia to make beads.

After viewing the video, stop by her blog, BH Claysmith where Barbara shares more about herself, her work and "Creativity in Society Today."

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Celebrate Creativity!

Please join CAAN at
Main Line Art Center
September 15th, 2009
9:00-11:00 a.m.

Making movements in the community
to unite older adults and the arts.

A great opportunity to

  • share information about upcoming shows, classes, or events
  • to network with people in arts and/or aging organizations
  • to meet teaching artists in our community!
See the results of CAAN's first ArtVenture Program, sponsored by the National Guild of Community Schools of the Arts and the MetLife Foundation.

Meet Todd Darr, CAAN’s business consultant through the Arts & Business Council of Greater Philadelphia. Todd is helping CAAN develop a successful business plan to propel the Creative Arts and Aging Network successfully into the future.

This event is being hosted at the Main Line Art Center, where you are invited to view the 72nd Annual Faculty Exhibition, celebrating MLAC’s award-winning, professional Teaching Artists and honoring four faculty members who have provided over 20 years of creative inspiration, Robert Finch, Carol Kardon, Francine Shore and Nury Vicens.

9:00 Continental Breakfast
9:30 CAAN Update & Introduction to Main Line Art Center
10:00 Meet & Greet, Network, View 72nd Annual Faculty Exhibition

Don’t miss this exciting opportunity!

Main Line Art Center: 746 Panmure Road Haverford, PA 19041 [Phone] 610.525.0272

Please RSVP to Meaghan: 610-325-1496 or by September 8, 2009

Monday, June 1, 2009

Don't Forget This Important Board Meeting!

Originally uploaded by dharmacat
This is just a reminder that our next CAAN Board Meeting is Tuesday, June 9th at 2:00. The meeting will be held at the Main Line Health Building in Broomall, the front conference room by the lobby will be our meeting space.

Todd Darr, our Business Consultant volunteer from the Arts and Business Council, will be joining us. It's an important meeting for CAAN and I will look forward to seeing you next Tuesday.Hope you all have a great start to your week. Happy June!


Tuesday, May 19, 2009

PA Arts Funding!

Dear National Guild Member:

The Pennsylvania Senate recently passed a state budget that
eliminates all funding ($14 million) for the arts. It also eliminates the state arts council, the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts (PCA).
As a member of the National Guild of Community Schools of the
Arts, you know how important the arts are to your students and their families. Many of you receive support from the PCA to help make your programs more robust and more accessible. Many have received support from the PCA to attend our conferences and meetings.The PCA has hosted our national conference twice in
recent years, once in Philadelphia and once in Pittsburgh.

You may not know that the PCA has been more supportive of community arts education than any other state arts agency in the US. As a grantmaker, convener and advocate for the public value of the arts, they demonstrate extraordinary leadership and innovation. In fact, the PCA's innovative grant process was recognized by the Kennedy School of Government as one of 50 finalists in its "Innovations in American Government" competition.

The Guild has worked closely with the PCA's staff to help you build strong and sustainable programs. They have been steadfast in their commitment to supporting community arts education.

Now they need our help-and they need it now.
Go to the Citizens for the Arts website and do two simple things:
  • Sign up to receive action alerts.
  • Contact your state senator and state representative to urge their support for state funding for the arts in the budget for next year. It is quick and easy to do. Consider sending personal letters as well, from your staff, your board and your students and parents.
Then, spread the word to your board, staff, parents and students.
  • Put a message on your website with a link to Citizens for the Arts in PA:
  • Have your staff and board add a message to their email signature with a link to Citizens for the Arts.
  • Make sign-up sheets available at classes and events to register people for Citizens for the Arts.
Be Creative
  • Arrange to have your students play for legislators and their staff. Go to their district office and play for them and leave the message of the importance of the arts. Leave behind a painting or print as a reminder.
Don't let this happen in Pennsylvania. By advocating for public support for the arts, you not only help yourself but all community arts education providers across the United States.

Sincerely,Jonathan Herman
Executive Director
National Guild of Community Schools of the Arts
520 Eighth Avenue, Suite 302
New York, NY 10018
(212) 268-3337 ext. 15

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Eva Zeisel: Still Creating Beauty at 102! is a great site...ideas worth spreading. TED stands for Technology, Entertainment, Design. But its scope has become ever broader. TED brings together the world's most fascinating thinkers and doers, who are challenged to give the talk of their lives--in 18 minutes--all recorded on video.

Here a great video from the ceramics designer Eva Zeisel looking back on a 75-year career. What keeps her work as fresh today (her latest line debuted in 2008) as in 1926? Her sense of play and beauty, and her drive for adventure. Listen to Eva Zeisel: The Playful Search for Beauty for stories from a rich, colorful life. It's worth spreading!

Her forms are often abstractions of the natural world and human relationships. Work from throughout her prodigious career is included in important museum collections across the world. Born in 1906, Zeisel declares herself a "maker of useful things." Zeisel currently resides in New York where she continues to design furniture as well as glass and ceramic objects.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

2009 PennPAT Spring Artist Workshop

Showcasing: Why, Where and How? PennPAT's Spring Artist Workshop is open to all Pennsylvania-based performing artists and groups, and will be offered in Philadelphia (April 16). For complete details and information on how to register, please visit their website.

The purpose of Pennsylvania Performing Arts on Tour (PennPAT) is to increase opportunities for professional Pennsylvania-based performing artists to obtain successful touring engagements.

Monday, February 23, 2009

Age & Art...

An excerpt from an MMCA Marketplace interview with PA artist Linda Benton McCloskey--when asked what made her decide to become an artist and how old was she when she knew:

"Actually, it wasn’t until I was in my late fifties …. Years ago when I was a young high school student, loving my art class, I mentioned to my art teacher that I was thinking about art as a career. Her response to me as that she felt that I didn’t have a talent in the art field and that it would better to pursue something different. And, I believed her... never painting, just admiring those who could... one of my co-workers suggested that I take a beginners watercolor class held in the evening. My first thought was 'Are you kidding? I haven’t picked up a brush for over 40 years.' But, what did I have to lose? I took that first class and the first night my teacher asked me to paint a landscape. Afterward - looking back on that 1st painting - it was awful - my first reaction was 'my art teacher was right - I don’t have talent.' But I was encouraged to continue to try… the rest is history."

Friday, February 20, 2009

Watch Amy make a cool thing.

Need a little lift today? Pour yourself a cup of tea, sit back, relax and enjoy this little 7 minute film about Amy--who made 17 things--making a cool 18th thing together with a bunch of people.

Amazing this power of the internet...of YouTube...of creativity...of one person. Follow Amy's internet trail for more or just smile and enjoy this cool 18th thing.

And now, for your fun viewing pleasure...The Beckoning of Lovely.

2009 CAAN Meeting Calendar

CAAN meetings will be held bi-monthly, on the second Tuesday of the month. The time will rotate between morning and afternoon.

2009 CAAN General Meetings
(a.m. meetings in purple, p.m. meetings in green)
  • Tuesday, March 10 - 2:00-3:30 p.m.
  • Tuesday, May 12 - 9:00-10:30 a.m.
  • Tuesday, July 14 - 2:00-3:30 p.m.
  • Tuesday, September 8 - 9:00-10:30 a.m.
  • Tuesday, November 10 - 2:00-3:30 p.m.

If you are interested in hosting one of these meetings, please contact Meaghan Brown.

2009 CAAN Board Meeting Calendar

CAAN Board Members will meet every month, on the second Tuesday of the month.
CAAN general meetings will be held bi-monthly, with the time rotating between morning and afternoon. CAAN Board meetings will be held on the alternate months, on the second Tuesday, always in the afternoon.

2009 Board Meetings (in red)
  • Tuesday, March 10 - 2:00-3:30 p.m.
  • Tuesday, April 14 - 2:00-3:00 p.m.
  • Tuesday, May 12 - 9:00-10:30 a.m.
  • Tuesday, June 9 - 2:00-3:00 p.m.
  • Tuesday, July 14 - 2:00-3:30 p.m.
  • Tuesday, August 11 - 2:00-3:00 p.m.
  • Tuesday, September 8 - 9:00-10:30 a.m.
  • Tuesday, October 13 - 2:00-3:00 p.m.
  • Tuesday, November 10 - 2:00-3:30 p.m.
  • Tuesday, December 8 - 2:00-3:00 p.m.

If you are interested in hosting a Board Meeting, please contact Meaghan Brown.

Meeting: March 10, 2009

The new CAAN Board met this week, and we have set the date for our next general member CAAN meeting.

Our next meeting will be Tuesday, March 10th at 2:00 PM.

Our Location:
Maris Grove, an Erickson Community
200 Maris Grove Way
Glen Mills, PA 19342

Our Host Team is:
Jenn Allen- Office (610) 387-4544,
Sally Christy & LuAnn Davis

CAAN meetings will be held bi-monthly, on the second Tuesday of the month. The time will rotate between morning and afternoon.

Monday, February 9, 2009

Join the CAAN Board!

I am delighted to announce our Creative Arts and Aging Network Board, as of February 2009:

Executive Board:President- Meaghan Brown, Mid County Senior Services
Vice President- Susan Purcell, Library System of Delaware County
Recording Secretary- Jenn Allen, Maris Grove
Corresponding Secretary- Position Still Available!Treasurer- Rennie Cohen, Aging Positively
Artists’ Representative: Richard Aldorasi (more than one position available)
Steering Committee Members:Kathy Bright, Wayne Art Center
Mary Catherine Dabrowski, Mid County Senior Services
Suzanne Hayward, Community Arts Center
Stacie Nussbaum, Main Line Art Center
Several positions still available!

If you are interested in joining CAAN as a volunteer Board Member, please go to CAAN Board Descriptions and Application. Please email me with your interest or any questions at:

I look forward to continuing the great work of CAAN with each of you, and thank you for your continued support!


Originally uploaded by Eduardo!

CAAN Board Member Application & Job Descriptions

Creative Arts and Aging Network“Making movements in the community to unite older adults and the arts.”

Board Member Application
Name ________________________________________________

Organization (if artist, simply write “artist”)


Telephone Number ________________________________

Email Address ____________________________________

Board Position to which you would like to apply:
(Please mark the appropriate title)

______ President

______ Vice President

______ Recording Secretary

______ Corresponding Secretary

______ Treasurer

______ Artist Representative

______ Steering Committee Board Member

All persons applying for a Board Position shall be committed to the mission of the Creative Arts and Aging Network, attend all scheduled meetings, and shall be entitled one vote.

The goal for the Creative Arts and Aging Network Board is to be a collaboration of community arts representatives, social service agency representatives, artists and humanitarians.

The mission of the Creative Arts and Aging Network is to promote avenues and opportunities for all elders, artists, and people of the aging network to explore the arts as a means of life enhancement.

Thank you!

Fun art by Susan Shortell
Originally uploaded by eszter

Creative Arts and Aging NetworkBoard Member Job Descriptions

  • Member ex oficio of all established committees and shall call special meetings of the board.
  • Shall appoint all committees, temporary or permanent.
  • Shall see all books, reports and other items required by law are properly kept or filed.
  • Shall be one of the officers who may sign checks or drafts of the organization.
Vice President
  • Shall be one of the officers who shall sign checks or drafts of the organization .
  • Shall exercise all duties incident to the office of Vice President or, in absence, all duties of President.

Recording Secretary
  • Shall keep the minutes and records of the organization in appropriate books.
  • Shall give and serve all notices to members of the organization, giving notices for meeting and agendas two weeks in advance of scheduled meeting.

Corresponding Secretary
  • Shall attend to all the correspondence of the organization and shall exercise all duties incident to the office of Secretary.

  • Must be one of the officers who shall sign checks or drafts of the organization. No special fund may be set aside that shall make it unnecessary for the Treasurer to sign the checks issued upon it.
  • Shall render at stated periods as the Board determines a written account of all finances of the organization and such report shall be physically affixed to the minutes of the Board at such a meeting.
  • Shall exercise all duties to the office of Treasurer.
Artist Representative
  • Shall represent the interests of participating CAAN artists at all times.
  • May act ex oficio of any special CAAN committee.

Steering Committee Board Member
  • Shall be entitled to one vote.
  • Shall serve established term.
  • Shall promote the mission of CAAN in the community and through active participation in scheduled meetings and events.
No officer shall for reason of this office be entitled to receive any salary or compensation

January 14 ~ Meeting Minutes

Creative Arts and Aging Network
Meeting Minutes
January 14th, 2009Community Arts Center in Wallingford

CAAN Members in Attendance: Maris Grove: Jenn Allen, Sally Christy, LuAnn Davis; Wayne Art Center: Kathy Bright; Wayne Senior Center: Donna Alexander; Mid County Senior Services: Meaghan Brown, Mary Catherine Dabrowski; Main Line Art Center: Stacie Nussbaum; Community Arts Center: Suzanne Hayward; Library System of Delaware County : Susan Purcell; Senior Community Services: Nikki Panico; Northwestern Human Services: Sharon White; The Philadelphia Orchestra: Christy Voytko; Greater Philadelphia Cultural Alliance & Media Arts Council: Jessica Eldredge; Artist: Richard Aldorasi; Aging Positively: Rennie Cohen

1) Grant Update: The 12-week program is called ArtVenture: A Moving Story. CAAN artists Kezia Lechner and Sheila Zagar are teaching the classes, held at Main Line Art Center. The classes will begin February 23rd, applications are available from anyone on the ArtVenture Committee (Rennie Cohen, Suzanne Hayward, Donna Alexander, Mary Catherine Dabrowski, or Stacie Nussbaum).

2) Small group breakout session, 4 CAAN Committees formed:
a. Marketing & Publicityi. Facilitator: Meaghan Brown
ii. Goals to work on in 2009:
1. Publish an on-line Network & Membership Directory
2. Utilize the web to attract artists and agencies to CAAN
3. Establish a year-end culminating event to present CAAN
4. Communicate throughout the year via a listserv through google or yahoo

b. Training
i. Facilitator: Mary Catherine Dabrowski
ii. Goals to work on for 2009:
1. Start an artists group to meet and to participate in on-line discussions and blogs.
Have meetings with speakers, reach a large range of artists.
2. Develop a resource manual for artists working with older adults
3. Develop a blog for teaching artists to act as a support and membership group

c. Creative Experiencesi. Facilitator: Kathy Bright
ii. Goals to work on for 2009:
1. Create and distribute surveys about groups’ services and programs to providers
of creative programming services
2. Create a tool (survey) for users of creative programming for seniors to be used to
analyze the creative programming needs of individual center participants.
3. Develop an online handbook for users of services with program options offered my
member organizations and artists, including pertinent information such as program
description, fees, etc.
4. Explore possibility of grant funding for provision of creative programming for CAAN
member facilities.

d. Artist Support
i. Facilitator: Rennie Cohen
ii. Goals for 2009:
1. Find funding for artists
2. Act as a clearinghouse for artists
3. Develop an annual artist showcase

Each group also identified the timeframe and resources needed to obtain each objective, for the purpose of keeping our meeting minutes shorter, you can find these by checking our blog at If you are interested in joining any of these committees, you can sign up at our next meeting or email Meaghan Brown @

3) Board Structure:
a. The following structured was voted on and approved by CAAN members present. For
more specific details on CAAN’s structure, and for position descriptions, please check out
the CAAN blog.
i. Executive Board- Hold All Voting Rights
ii. Steering Committee Members – Hold All Voting Rights
iii. Advisors – No Voting Power
iv. At-Large Members- No Voting Power
b. Board Members serve a 3 year term, with the option to renewed twice (1 year plus and
additional 2) for a total of 6 possible years of service
c. For the first 3 years, every board member will stay, after that some board members will
have longer terms than others and to preserve continuity and to bring new people in.

4) CAAN General Meetings
a. Will meet bi-monthly for 1 ½ hour meetings, rotating locations.
b. Board members are committed to attending all meetings, CAAN General Meetings include
Advisors and At-Large Members

5) The next meeting date will be announced February 2009.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Have an ArtVenture!

Congratulations to us! On behalf of the MetLife Foundation, the National Guild of Community Schools of the Arts(NGCS) has awarded nine creative aging grants for 2008-2009. And we were one of them! Check us out (identified as the Main Line Art Center.