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Pakuranga Park raises more than $700 for Dementia Auckland

There’s no doubt that Pakuranga Park is a village where creative talents abound, if we look at the numbers of last weekend’s Art & Craft Expo. The Community Lounge was changed into a contemporary Museum with more than 220 pieces exhibited from a great variety of disciplines: from oil paintings to marquetry, embroidery to patchwork, sculptures and scrapbooking.

The exhibition included pieces from more than 30 residents.

More than 30 residents participated in the exhibition that was open to the public on Friday and Saturday. Some of the artists have already had their artwork displayed in many exhibitions throughout Auckland. This is the case of Jess Kang, an active member of the Howick Art Group whose landscapes and animal portraits caused much admiration.

Jess Kang's is currently painting with Tony Clarks Fine Art School.

The expo was organized by one of the village’s Activities Coordinators, Chris Bull. Chris is not only an art lover but she’s also passionate about enhancing the residents’ lives. The exhibition has been a great opportunity for her to get to know some of the villagers and make new friends along the way.

Chris spent the last four weeks gathering the pieces for the exhibition and transforming the Lounge into a Museum.

Since she started working at Pakuranga Park in August last year, Chris has been pleasantly surprised to see how many of the residents are using their retirement years to fulfil their creative dreams. Noeleen Steele didn’t pick up an artist’s brush until her fifties but she hasn’t stopped since then. Her bright and colourful paintings have been exhibited in local shows.

Noeleen Steele is involved with the Whitianga Art Group in Mercury Bay.

Noeleen shares the creativity streak with her husband John. After 40 years of a career in the motor industry, John decided to pursue his strong interest in New Zealand history once in retirement. This has resulted in three books and various articles and contributions to magazines and journals over the past 15 years.

John Steele is passionate about NZ story, his latest book is: No Ordinary Man: The Extraordinary Life and Times of Dr Arthur Purchas.

Over the course of two days the expo was attended by almost 500 people. The entry fee was a gold coin donation with all the proceeds going to Dementia Auckland. Pakuranga Park raised more than $700 for this charity organization that offers a range of free services for families and people living with a diagnosis of dementia.

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