Willie Weaver-Bay has pared down his 10,000-piece oeuvre to just 50 paintings for a one-day show.
Art therapy for veterans can take make shapes – think theater programs, equine therapy, or, like for Willie Weaver-Bey, painting with pastels. Weaver-Bey’s experience has been colored, however, by a 40-year stint in prison for possession with intent to distribute drugs. After serving in the Army, during which he was stationed in Germany, Weaver-Bey was twice convicted and then spent the next four decades in prison. After he was released, he became homeless for at time, until the Milwaukee VA helped him secure housing and a job. The independence allowed him to paint feverishly, and helped him cope better with his post-traumatic stress disorder. Tomorrow, Jan. 20, he will display 50 of his favorite paintings tomorrow from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. in the Matousek Auditorium at the VA’s Medical Center (5000 W. National Ave.).
The pop-up exhibit is just a few short weeks before the VA’s annual Creative Arts Festival, which takes place on Feb. 27 (for visual artists) and March 2 (for the performing arts).