SAN FRANCISCO (KCBS) – During this National Disability Month,  one San Francisco nonprofit is celebrating 30 years of serving a community of artists with developmental disabilities.

Creativity Explored provides these artists with the means to create, exhibit, and sell their art in their studios and gallery, and around the world.

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“It’s made a really significant difference in a lot of people’s lives who work in our studio,” Executive Director of Creativity Explored Amy Taub said. “It gives people a chance to communicate in a way that is really meaningful with people without disabilities through their art.  It gives people an opportunity to earn income.”

KCBS’ Connie C. Kim talks to Amy Taub, executive director of Creativity Explored:

The main mission of Creativity Explored is to provide support to those individuals with developmental disabilities who wish to become self-employed artists.    Artists with developmental disabilities can come to their visual art center where the organization provides them with instruction, materials, work space, and an opportunity to exhibit the art.

The age of the 135 current artists range from 22 to their 80s.

“People walk in with a preconceived notion that the art by people with developmental disabilities will look like children’s art,” Taub explains a common misunderstanding the public seems to have.  “It’s a commonly held misconception that that’s the case and many times people are really, really surprised at the quality of the art.”

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Creativity Explored recently started a licensing program so the art can be used on various products such as houseware at CB2, a division of Crate and Barrel.

Their current and final exhibit of the year is “San Francisco’s Calacas: Day of the Dead” which focuses on the artwork of more than 20 Creativity Explored studio artists and their interpretation of the holiday of El Dia De Los Muertos (The Day of the Dead), which is celebrated on November 2nd.  The exhibit runs through November 24th at the Creativity Explored Gallery located at 3245 Sixteenth Street, San Francisco.

“Art isn’t created by someone because of any IQ, of any kind of educational process that they’ve had,” Taub added. “But creativity is a matter of exploring and seeing what happens.”

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