Famous Visually Impaired Painter and Smithsonian Fellow coming to the Envision Arts Gallery

Famous Visually Impaired Painter and Smithsonian Fellow Exhibiting at the Envision Arts Gallery

By Beth Walker • Sep 25, 2023

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George Mendoza is a famous painter who has been visually impaired since age 15. He is a world-renowned artist, author, Smithsonian Fellow, Paralympic Athlete, activist, motivational speaker and is also CEO and President of the Wise Tree Foundation, established in 2013 to promote arts for the disabled community. He broke the world record for blind athletes running the mile in 4 minutes and 28 seconds in 1980. He was also the producer for two nationally televised PBS documentaries based on his life story and has won many awards in the arts. His art exhibit Colors of the Wind is also currently on view with the National Smithsonian Museum in Washington, D.C. Mendoza will be exhibiting several pieces from Colors of the Wind at the Envision Arts Gallery on October 6th in the Patricia A. Peer Window Gallery and will run through October 27th. 

“George reached out to us after learning about Envision’s mission and asked if we would exhibit his work,” said Sarah Kephart, Envision Arts Manager. “We are grateful to have the opportunity to exhibit seven of his paintings from Colors of the Wind from the collection of the Ellen Noël Art Museum at the October exhibition.” 

With over 500 paintings created so far, Mendoza uses his talents and skills to create colorfully vivid dreamscapes that capture the surreal essence of his experiences in life. Still able to see light and color fractions behind his eyes, Mendoza often paints these fractions onto canvas, making them tactile for the whole world, including people with disabilities, to experience.  

Mendoza will be returning to the Envision Arts Gallery in July of 2024 and will be exhibiting his entire collection of 40 paintings from Colors of the Wind, with a series of workshops and presentations following.  

“For artists of this caliber with vision loss, we witness the power of what it means to believe in oneself and by trusting the process of creative self-expression, anything is possible! We are so grateful to have George Mendoza’s incredible work displayed not once, but twice in our gallery,” said Kephart. 

To learn more about the Envision Arts Gallery and upcoming exhibitions, click here for more information
A headshot of Mendoza smiling, next to an image of one of his tactile paintings.