SALT LAKE CITY — If the circumstances are right, painting can be as much performance art as music or dancing.
Davis County residents are invited to “Sound and Light,” where international artist Josee Nandeau will paint live to the music of the Salt Lake Symphony on Oct. 13 at 6:30 p.m. at the University of Utah’s Libby Gardner Hall. Proceeds will go toward what organizers believe will be the first neurological clinic in Morocco.
“There’s a huge stigma against neurological conditions in Morocco,” said Mohammad Sbia, a major force behind the clinic. “Hopefully, this facility will give people with those conditions the chance to have a better quality of life.”
Gerald Van der Kemp, the French art expert behind the restoration of Louis XIV’s palace at Versailles, invited Nandeau to show her work at Claude Monet’s house in France. She went on to spend the next decade as the artist in residence there, then moved to Utah after she fell in love with it on a skiing trip.
“She’s very sensitive to the landscape here,” said Sbia. “It’s become part of her repertoire.”
Sbia was inspired to create the clinic because of his brother, who lived in Morocco and suffered traumatic brain injury after a 1999 car accident. Though the brother had excellent health insurance, there were no neurological facilities in Morocco and the brother declined in health.
Though Sbia brought his brother to America for helpful therapy, a visa difficulty later left him trapped in Morocco again. He died in 2007, due to complications from his condition.
“I would do the same thing over again if I had the chance,” said Sbia, who added that he was grateful for the extra time with his brother. “But I feel a burning desire to reach out to those patients still in Morocco. They’re basically dying.”
The clinic will be prepared to deal with all kinds of neurological repair and rehabilitation, ranging from spinal injury and stroke victims to children whose brains are damaged during the delivery process.
“The injuries are minor, but they’re kept home by their parents their whole lives,” said Sbia. “By the time they’re teenagers, they’re basically handicapped.”
For more information check out the Oct.4 edition of Davis Clipper.