LOMA LINDA — More than 60 pieces of art from among 50 different categories were on display to the public at the VA Loma Linda Medical Center local Veterans Creative Arts Competition on Feb. 20.

Don Carlson, veteran

Don Carlson, a Veteran receiving care at the VA Loma Linda (Pictured top left), reflects on artwork created by local Veterans in the Inland Empire.

The competition is an annual event that provides Veterans receiving treatment at VA facilities the opportunity to participate in creative self-expression in art, creative writing, dance, drama and music as part of their therapy, and to gain recognition for these artistic accomplishments.

The first-place pieces will advance to the national level where they will compete with entries submitted by Veterans from other VA facilities from across the country.  Some of the first-place winners from the national competition will be invited to attend the 2020 National Veterans Creative Arts Festival in St Petersburg, Fla., in December.

Artist Richard Swanson won the local VA Loma Linda “Best in Show”  for his entry in the pottery category called “Sea Goddess..” (Pictured above) Richard’s art will be joined by 30 other Veteran artworks competing nationally.

The local competition included 50 art categories that ranged from oil painting to leatherwork to paint-by-number kits.  There were also 120 categories pertaining to all aspects of music, dance, drama and creative writing.  The creative writing division included original works in poetry, essay, short story and personal experience writing.  The competition recognizes the progress and recovery made through arts therapy, and raises the visibility of the creative achievements of the nation’s Veterans.

The VA Art Competition and Show provides Veterans with an opportunity to be acknowledged for their artistic talents and skills.

Co-presented by the Department of Veterans Affairs and the American Legion Auxiliary, the National Veterans Creative Arts Festival (NVCAF) is the culmination of talent competitions in art, creative writing, dance, drama and music for Veterans treated in the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) national health care system. Veterans exhibit their artwork and original writings or perform musical, dance or dramatic selections in a live stage show performance. All Veterans invited to participate are selected winners of year-long, national fine arts talent competitions in which thousands of Veterans enter, from VA medical facilities across the nation.

VA medical facilities incorporate creative arts into their therapy programs to further the rehabilitation goals for both inpatients and outpatients. This annual competition recognizes the progress and recovery made through that therapy and raises the visibility of the creative achievements of our Nation’s Veterans.

 

 

 

Image Sources

  • Don Carlson, veteran: VA Loma Linda Healthcare System
  • Art show winner 2020: VA Loma Linda Healthcare System