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"Art Inspired" Recycles Paper and Empowers People With Disabilities

“Know Me for My Abilities” is artwork done by people with developmental disabilities and the first feature for Art Inspired.

Art Inspired is a non-profit art gallery that creates art and home decor from recycled paper. Art Inspired also gives adults with disabilities the chance to express themselves.

Art Inspired collects paper from local businesses, then recycles that paper into a pulp substance, similar to paper machete. This pulp is then used to create canvases, sculptures, picture frames, home decor, and greeting cards.

The very first gallery on exhibit this month is called “Know Me for My Abilities.” This exhibit will feature artwork done by people with developmental disabilities.  100 percent of the profits from the exhibit will go back to the artist.

Art Inspired's manager, Richard White, says it's important to empower individuals with developmental disabilities.

“We are also proud of the fact that we offer an integrated work force.  So we hire people with disabilities but they work hand in hand with people who do not have disabilities. And we offer a competitive wage to those individuals with disabilities as well,” said White.

The gallery opens on August 18th. In the following months, it will feature local Springfield artists. Art Inspired plans on having interactive art classes and spaces for future events. On Fridays and Saturdays, they plan on having an Artini Bar, where they will sell martinis at the gallery while a local artist paints live.

Art Inspired will also continue to display and sell artwork by artists with disabilities.

For KSMU News I’m Shannon Bowers.