Sunday, October 26, 2008

Visual arts: 'Alzheimer's from the inside out'

U. exhibit of a series of self-portraits sheds light on painter's descent into dementia.
By Brian Maffly
The Salt Lake Tribune

With an Alzheimer's diagnosis, the late American painter William Utermohlen, then 62, became his own chief subject. And with bittersweet irony, he created an oeuvre for which he will be best remembered, even as his artistic talent failed him.
Some of Utermohlen's late self-portraits will hang at the Utah Museum of Fine Arts next month, offering patrons a view into his gradual, frustrating decline into dementia, culminating with an inability to organize facial features into a cohesive vision of self.
The 17-painting exhibit is part of a two-month effort to bridge neuroscience and the arts in a way that promotes public understanding of the whole story

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