Jake DiMauro & Anastasia Malysheva
The old proverb says that those who teach are the “ones who cannot do.” How, then, can it be explained when someone can both do and teach?
And this someone didn’t stop there but went onto start an organization dedicated to teaching their passion to even the most disenfranchised among us. Surely cancer and blindness would slow this person down. But no, of course not. She will just teach other blind people the skills she has learned.
This unstoppable force for good is not a myth. Her name is Judy Mallory and she is quite real. Her dream and mission to open Arts for All began in 2006.
Mallory created her nonprofit as a way to provide art education at affordable prices. Arts for All provides a dynamic education that is available to all. Public classes are offered for $10 an hour and workshops are provided for the public and community organizations.
The nonprofit has served thousands of students and currently impacts the lives of many families and children by helping to develop critical thinking skills, problem solving, resourcefulness, teamwork and self-expression.
“I think the arts are really the most important education,” Mallory said.
“I see very little these days—only movement, really. Is it going to rain tonight? Have you heard?” inquired the well-kept lady, adjusting her polka-dot glasses to sit firmly on the bridge of her nose.
Her vision has declined steadily over the years and the future looks “unencouraging” by her own admission. But in spite of all this, she continues to include art and beauty in the lives of others.
What motivates Mallory? She believes that so many of us have been swallowed up by the day-to-day routine of everyday life and we stop appreciating the simple things this world can offer including friendship, mundane beauty and art.
“I want people to realize there are all kinds of places and ways that we see,” said Mallory squinting as she speaks, but clearly focused on her purpose.
She challenges us to cover our eyes and imagine what it would be like to live one day completely in the dark. Imagine the majesty when, after a full day of darkness, you open your eyes to the splendor and grace of our natural world, be it a city park, a flower bed, a child or even Dodge Street at noon.
Facilities would be inundated with clear, blazing, colorful impressions and bold images of things one could only imagine for the past 24 hours, which is how we learn to appreciate art.
While visiting with Mallory, an individual understands that the world around us is raw, stunning and full of exquisite beauty.
But, like all sensory creatures who experience something continually over a long period, we become dull to the sensations and fail to appreciate the rich abounds in the everyday world.
Mallory explains that art transforms those commonplace impressions and forces us to recognize the true beauty of the world by calling on our creativity, our own interpretation and our relation to the object being perceived.
Art is affordable, takes little time, but returns as an untold wealth that cannot be squandered, only invested in the betterment of our souls.
Mallory has committed so much of her time and soul to help people view and appreciate things she can no longer see. Every time she helps one person understand and perceive the great beauty that art offers, she achieves a small piece of her life’s purpose.
One can only marvel at what a precious and noble cause that Mallory has chosen to live out and pursue. Due to Arts for All’s success and future prospects, she lives a beautiful, vision-filled life.