Brittany, a self taught artist, has been with VSA Colorado/Access Gallery since 2005 when she came to VSAC through an internship program with her high school. Smart and determined, Brittany is no stranger to adversity. Living with Cerebral Palsy and limited resources and opportunities, Brittany has created her own business called Brittany’s Accessories, through which she creates a variety of art including her self-taught pony bead art. Brittany is a mixed media artist who uses pony beads to create functional works of art. When asked why she works with pony beads, she responds, “they are simply the most affordable bead I can buy.” Her interest in beads was sparked in high school when she was asked to create a work of art inspired by the Yoruba people. Brittany was mostly influenced by the meaning and history of their beadwork. She works with imagery from DC Comics and Marvel. These images trigger memories of watching cartoons with her brother when they werekids. She and her boyfriend, who also happens to be blind, stand together as advocates for people with disabilities. Brittany was born and raised in Denver, Colorado and is currently represented by VSAC/Access Gallery. VSA Colorado/Access Gallery (VSA) is a community-based nonprofit organization located in the Art District on Santa Fe in Denver, Colorado. VSA engages the community by opening doors to creative and educational opportunities for young people with disabilities to access and experience the arts. Individuals in the ArtWorks program gain confidence, art skills and job skills. With 70% of people with disabilities unemployed and many living at or below the poverty level, the ArtWorks program helps change the economic equation for the participating artists. ArtWorks artists can be commissioned to create a variety of original works.
Brittany | On The Move Colorado | December 27, 2012: : This video series was funded through the Colorado Medicaid Infrastructure Grant (MIG). Emily vonSwearingen was commissioned to create a photography and digital storytelling project following young people with disabilities as they navigated and explored their environments. Each featured individual has unique transportation challenges they overcome to lead independent, productive and interesting lives.The emphasis of this project, is to demonstrate the value of using the regular bus system and alternate forms of transportation whenever possible to achieve flexibility and spontaneity for getting to work, recreational activities, social events, etc. This project was exhibited by VSA Colorado/Access Gallery in December 2012.