Artists with Autism: A Place that Celebrates and Mentors Talent for those on the Spectrum

There exists no exact accurate depiction for an autistic artist, let alone an autistic individual. Autism falls under a broad spectrum, although such neurodiverse individuals may share specific recognizable traits. An autistic person tends to have intense interests. Usually, they vastly excel at whatever draws their interest. Autistic people are original thinkers who follow their own unique path rather than the mainstream.

Many of the most ingenious and memorable humans in history have been autistic. Strong evidence shows innovators such as Mozart, Andy Warhol, Nicolas Tesla, and Michelangelo were all likely to have been on the spectrum. The autistic community takes credit for such talented and groundbreaking individuals, although the media may often focus on shock and disappointment following an autistic diagnosis. Being neurodivergent in a neurotypical society can create struggles for autistic artists.

As gifted as these individuals, they may, for one, struggle with the business side of things. Mozart died impoverished, and he, like many autistics, was a leader rather than a follower. His gifted ears allowed him to hear every note, but loud and unpleasant sounds could make him feel overwhelmed and ill. A heightened sense of sensitivity creates a need for autistic artists to have proper support and that is where Artists with Autism comes in.

The Artists with Autism organization recognizes the need for neurodiverse artists to have backing and support. They support self-employment for autistic artists and help them achieve their creative pursuits while learning necessary business and entrepreneurship skills.

Artist Brandon Drucker at Hab Center event.

The Motivation Behind Artists with Autism

Artists with Autism started in May of 2012. The four founding member artists are Brandon Drucker, Jayson Halberstadt, Joseph Michael Vidal, and Andres Pola. During the organization’s first two years, the young founding artists featured their work at local events such as farmers’ markets, craft fairs, and church bazaars. Their work became widely popular and was in great demand. Three years later, Artists with Autism made its home at the Festival Flea Market in Pompano Beach, Florida. The rest is history!

The Artists with Autism gallery and gift boutique is unlike any other art exhibit in South Florida. It’s a great place for everyone to find beautiful, affordable, and unique items while supporting autistic artists. Autistic artists have free exhibit space, and they present and sell their work in a beautiful art gallery. The benevolent organization gives these talented individuals opportunities for recognition. They also kindly mentor artists and help them build their artistic empires.

Margie Lee and Jordan Forges at table.

Shining Gems at the Gallery

Visitors love seeing beautiful and unique items only available at the Artists with Autism Gallery and Gift Shop. No visit is the same, and there’s always something new to see. The Autism Art Gallery has artisan-made gift items, including greeting cards, shirts, and affordable priced original artworks and reprints in various sizes.

Artists use many artistic mediums, including acrylic and watercolor paintings, digital art, photography, and hand-crafted jewelry.  By receiving proceeds from the sale of their items they have funds to reinvest into their business. 

Norval Hall at gallery.

The Artist with Autism Virtual Gallery

Are you looking for some new and unique art? Well, look no further, and check out beautiful one-of-a-kind pieces at the Artists with Autism Virtual Gallery. There are so many incredible pieces of art in many different styles! Your purchase helps directly support the artist.

Reprints of art are available in various sizes, and there are several unique gift items. Prices are reasonable and range from about $5 to $24 dollars. Click here to see the most exquisite virtual gallery.

Spotlight on “Artists with Autism” Creator Patricia Lynn

Patricia Lynn is one of Artists with Autism’s special artists. This young talent is a multitalented artist, writer, actor, and content creator. She taught herself how to do digital art, and some of her favorite programs are Paint X and Sketchbook. Patricia is greatly influenced by anime, and her favorite anime is Sailor Moon! Her work is vibrant and feels alive. The innovator often creates works of art after she vividly dreams of them.

Talent runs in Patricia’s family as her mother, Sharon Halupka, is a professional painter and muralist. Sharon recognized Patricia’s artistic talent from a young age. Sharon found out about Artists with Autism and thought it would be a wonderful opportunity for Patricia to sell her art.

Selling her own art has made Patricia feel wonderful. The humble young talent creates a world of her own, and makes a storyboard with her art, and uses that to develop characters. An original series cby Patricia Lynn is in the works. Patricia Lynn is proficient in stop-motion animation, claymation and does voice-over work. “She has another level of consciousness”, Sharon Halupka on her daughter Patricia Lynn’s art.

Sailer Pluto and Sailor Mini Pluto Standing by Moonlight, by Patricia Lynn.

Meet “Artists with Autism” Founding Member Cynthia Drucker

Cynthia Drucker is the founder of Artists with Autism. She is a South Florida native and a proud mother of two sons. Her second-born son, Brandon, was born in 1991 and diagnosed with autism at three years old. Cynthia strived to find ways to celebrate her son’s neurodiversity. She observed his natural artistic talent from a young age and encouraged his creative pursuits. She saw how happy he was when he sold his first piece of art. This joy eventually inspired her to form Artists with Autism alongside their four founding artists, including her son.

How to Help Support Artists with Autism

Artists with Autism greatly relies on donations from its generous benefactors. They accept donations of any size, and your support and contributions are greatly appreciated. You can also sponsor an artist! Visit https://artistswithautism.com/donate to make a tax-deductible donation today.

The Artists with Autism Art Gallery and Gift Boutique is located at 2900 W. Sample Rd. B4433, Pompano Beach, Fl. 33073. They are conveniently located inside the Festival Marketplace. You can reach them by phone at 954-2786. Their website is Artists with Autism.

Jayson Halberstadt at Hab Center event.

We are honored to have the Artists with Autism Gallery and Gift Boutique right here in South Florida! Give them a visit today, and support an independent artist. Interested artists and their families are encouraged to check out the gallery and to speak with Cynthia Drucker about future opportunities. Support a great cause by gifting a unique piece of art from Artists with Autism!

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*LivingInOaklandPark.com is an independent publication, not affiliated with the City of Oakland Park.

About the Author

Megan Rebecca

Megan Rebecca

Megan Rebecca is a classical pianist, singer, composer, writer and music promoter. She holds a Bachelor's and Master’s Degree in Piano Performance. As a performer, Megan has played at many local venues and theaters as both a classical and contemporary performer. She has performed at clubs such as the Open Stage Club in Coral Gables, Jazid in South Beach, and has given recitals at the 92nd Street Y in New York City.

Megan Rebecca is active in the music community as a performer and arts activist and has published articles on music, education and travel. She has also published a thesis comparing and contrasting the music of Disney and Japanese anime.

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