The episode follows Sevy Marie Eicher, a 17-year-old artist who came from an orphanage in Bulgaria at the age of 12 to live with her adopted family in Houston, TX. Sevy is non-verbal and has Downs Syndrome. She has broken down barriers and shares her gift of painting with the world. Her natural talent for art has had a widespread impact on inclusivity in the art world, inspiring hope through her adversity, and I'm honored to have been apart of telling this extraordinary story.
They were looking for an artist who painted in a similar style to speak on the art, both Sevy and I are abstract expressionist painters. When I followed the link and was introduced to her work, my jaw was on the floor and not because she was so young, not because she had down syndrome, but because the work was so well composed and just so beautiful. www.sevymarieart.com
The show was just released this fall and was filmed by a local Austin Production Company, Rabbit Foot Entertainment in August. Participating in the project was quite the whirl win, I was emailed on a Friday, given my talking points on a Monday and we shot on a Wednesday. With this kind of rush to film, my first thought was, ok who dropped out last minute? I'm completely honored to have been your 15th choice, but I'd love to know who am I filling in for?
Apparently this is simply the time schedule they work on, they are given 3 weeks of interview/film time and they just roll with it and make it happen. Not a schedule I'm used to working on, but I couldn't be more happy and nervous to speak on Sevy's art and hopefully give her the recognition she deserves.
This particularly close to my heart because growing up my mother ran a group home for the mentally disabled. I knew at a very young age that these folks were very capable of living full lives. They held jobs, had relationships, volunteered and more than anything understood what was important in life and didn't sweat the small stuff- a lesson we could all learn. These guys were family.
This was a photo of three of the guys from my mom's group home the day they participated in the Connecticut Special Olympics '88 at Torrington High School. My Mom and I on the left were both volunteers that day and so proud of our athletes!