WHEN a Southampton mother realised that her grown up autistic daughter was becoming isolated, she decided to do something about it.
And today, Jane Bills-Moore is launching paintbox, an art group for adults with learning difficulties and disabilities, at Woolston Community Centre.
“My daughter, Lucy, is now 22,” explains Jane, who studied art at university and is her daughter’s carer.
“She went through school and college, but then there comes a time when everything offered is quite expensive and she started to find herself a bit isolated. I thought that if it’s isolating for her, it must be for a lot of young adults in similar situations.
“Lucy can’t work so she needs something to keep her occupied.”
The aim of the group is to provide a safe place for artists to simply create, but in the long term, Jane plans to turn some of the artists’ work into greeting cards, mugs, wrapping paper, maybe even corporate packaging that will be sold, with all profits going back into the group to benefit the artists and help the group grow and expand.
“I believe this will also give the artists a huge sense of pride when people actually buy their work,” says Jane.
“I’m also trying to get the word out so that we might be considered to be part of any upcoming community art projects in the city, and maybe even be offered space here and there to hold small exhibitions. In time I’d also love it if some small business owners would be able to stock some of our merchandise.”