Crash Survivor Uses Art To Raise Disability Awaraness

Colleen von Geitz

A mother left disabled following an accident is using her passion for sculpture to raise awareness about disability.

Budding artist Colleen von Geitz cheated death in a serious car accident several years ago but was left with a broken neck, now held in place with a titanium plate.

Colleen is one of 14 Kensington and Chelsea College sculpture students who will be displaying their work in an exhibition running at the college from February 28th until March 7th.

Entitled ‘2013’ the exhibition showcases an eclectic collection of artwork highlighting the creative skills of students studying Professional Development in Sculpture at the college.

The dramatic sculptures and eye-catching installations being displayed explore a range of topics. Colleen’s art work draws inspiration from her story of survival.

The 44-year-old from Chelsea said: ‘Art has been an outlet for my emotions. My piece for the exhibition is about my battle to get my mobility back following the accident. A moment can change your life, it changed mine. Things like movement can be taken for granted. I wanted to use the exhibition as an opportunity to not only raise my profile as an artist, but to also raise awareness of the everyday issues facing those who are less mobile or disabled, such as being able to access priority seats on the tube.’

‘2013’ is free to attend and is being held at the college’s Chelsea Centre, Hortensia Road, London SW10 0QS. The Gallery is open weekdays 10am-9pm Monday to Thursday and Friday 9am-5pm.

Guests will also have the opportunity to buy the exclusive pieces being showcased and meet the sculptors during a private view being held on Thursday 28th February, 6pm, at the Chelsea Centre.

The exhibition pieces were produced in the college’s Park Walk Sculpture Studio in Chelsea, West London. Described in the media as an ‘artistic gem’ the dedicated studio has been training sculptors for over 30 years, keeping alive the traditions of Rodin and Michelangelo in the modern age along with encouraging contemporary, abstract and conceptual art works.

They are all studying on the ‘Professional Development Sculpture: Advanced Diploma’. The course helps artists to fully develop their specialist area of work, within a highly motivated group. It includes studio space, technical help, tutorial advice and critiques, access to learning resources and exhibition facilities. Tuition is by a team of experienced working artists.

The college’s successful Arts Department enjoys a high-profile reputation, and has a successful student alumni which includes Turner prize nominee Spartacus Chetwynd; artist Julie Bennett who was labelled ‘one of Saatchi’s new stars’ by The Independent and Millie Pilkington who was commissioned by Clarence House as Prince William and Catherine Middleton’s private photographer for their wedding. Kensington and Chelsea College also recently became an associate college member for The National Skills Academy for Creative & Cultural – a status awarded to only a select number of colleges.

For more information contact the college’s Arts Office on: 0207 573 5258.