Saturday, July 2, 2011

Local Artist with Asperger Syndrome and the "Geek" Stereotype

Several years ago, I met a young teen in the Oak Tree program (BOCES) who had a talent for art.  This person isn't her, but there is a reason I am blogging about this artist with Asperger syndrome.

There is a stereotype of the person with Asperger syndrome.  They are "geeks", interested in science, nerdy, that kind of thing, or so the stereotype goes.  There is some truth to that (like many stereotypes, this has a degree of truth in it - and Bil, who has classic autism, has a special interest in the weather) but people would be surprised how many people with Asperger syndrome and autism have artistic talent.  Bil has never shown an interest in art, but who knows, was he ever really introduced to it?

Locally, we have something called the Magic Paintbrush Project.  This started here in the Binghamton area, and spread.  It serves all disabled populations, not just those with autism.  It welcomes adults, and if Bil had wanted this experience I would have been more than happy to introduce him to it.

Maybe one day I will, anyway.

Asperger syndrome isn't just for geeks anymore.  In fact, it never was.

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