Senior News

RBSCC Senior Resident & Artist Featured on Bushwick Billboard for 2015 Bushwick Open Studios

NOTE: The article and excerpt below originally appeared in the Spring 2015 Issue of The Bushwick Observer. Reprinted with permission from Ken Kern, author/editor.

RBSCC Artist Pan Cui Hua Blends East and West, Old and New

A 92 year old woman is not the first thing that comes to mind when you think of the Bushwick arts scene. Yet she will be right in the middle of this year's Bushwick Open Studios.

Bushwick resident Pan Cui Hua and husband Luo Bangyan
Photo credit: Alicia Diamond, Photographer 

Ms. Pan married Luo Bangyan in 1947 when they both were living in China. They were still in China when Ms. Pan retired. At that time, she thought she might try traditional Chinese watercolor painting. She had never picked up a brush. Judging by the paintings now hanging in her Bushwick apartment she was obviously meant to paint. When Ms. Pan and Mr. Luo came from China to New York in 1992 they settled in Chinatown. Ms. Pan became active in the Chinese-American Planning Council's senior center as a volunteer. She worked there from 1993 until 2006 when at the age of 83, she felt she had done enough working.

A year later Ms. Pan and Mr. Luo moved to Bushwick finding a home in the Plaza de los Ancianos senior housing building operated by the Ridgewood Bushwick Senior Citizens Council (RBSCC).One of the services provided by the RBSCC is free art lessons. The senior artists are taught oil painting by Christopher LoPresti Jr. Ms. Pan joined the group. Mr. LoPresti said of Ms. Pan, "she never misses a class. She's one of the students who works outside the class." Ms. Pan paints five days a week, splitting her time between oils and watercolors. Her advice to seniors is applicable to anyone, regardless of age or national origin. "Painting," says Ms. Pan, "is the best choice for maintaining the mind and the health."Ms. Pan's painting can be seen among the saveartspace billboards during the month of June.

By Ken Kern (Spring 2015, Bushwick Observer)

More About Saveartspace's Open Studio's Project

Saveartspace.org is a non-profit organization dedicated to creating outdoor public displays of art by transforming advertising billboards into art media. Saveartspace was created… by Bushwick residents Travis Rix and Justin Aversano in part to provide exposure to lesser known artists in Bushwick. …They wanted to create a shift from the commercialism that seemed to be everywhere to aesthetics. They wanted the art to be by the people in Bushwick who were affected by the billboard content. They wanted to offer exposure to Bushwick's lesser known artists. During Bushwick Open Studios, eleven artists' work will be displayed by saveartspace. Eight of the eleven are Bushwick residents. One of the artist's featured is Ms. Pan Cui Hua, a resident of the Plaza de los Ancianos senior housing building operated by the Ridgewood Bushwick Senior Citizens Council (RBSCC).

Excerpted from an article by Ken Kern (Spring 2015, Bushwick Observer)

The artist's billboards are on Flushing Avenue, Wilson Avenue, Wyckoff Avenue, and Bogart Street. The works will be displayed through June 28. See Saveartspace's map