Sunday, December 28, 2008

FAAN Tribough Bridge Adoption

Now the Robert F. Kennedy Bridge
My Gratitude For The Art Adoption Program and Aron Namenwirth

On the forth date, I was asked to decorate his home. Everyone had told me not to do it.
Don’t decorate the home of your brand-new boyfriend... especially when his divorce
papers are still being negotiated. Well, I didn’t listen to them. I’m not a stupid girl. I
knew I’d be doing it for free, with no future ownership of any of that decor. But, I saw
the need and I knew it was something I could do.

It was late. I had been searching the web for hours, for all things for someone else’s
home. I clicked into my email, remembering I had forgotten all day. And there it was.
Some email about art. Art. Yes, his house needed art. I started looking into the art
pieces... quickly thumbing through. And then... I saw it... this stunning piece. But,
even with all its drama, it was its subject matter that made me pause... the tollbooth into
Manhattan. Not only the place I dreamt of being, but the place that reminded me of

My parents lived in Brooklyn Heights as a young couple, long before me. They saved
their money and purchased their first house in the southern tip of the Adirondack park.
Growing up in New Jersey, we would often spend weekends at the house in the
country... until we moved to Wisconsin. I hadn’t seen the house since I was ten.
Twenty-five years later, my father passed away. And instead of deciding we were going
to mope around with sadness in our hearts, we loaded up the car, grabbed the dog, and off
my mother and I went... to refurbish the home two newlyweds first purchased some forty
years prior. One day my mother would move back to that house, and I wanted it to be
ready for her. We completed most everything on our list, with the exception of art. There
was one wall in particular which was just a massive amount of empty space. It still was
not a home. But, after rooftops and windows and radiators, there was certainly no money
left for reupholstering or art. We had left the house for many months, and I had long
forgotten the empty wall.

But, then, there I was staring at this painting of the tollbooth into the city, and thought of
how many times my parents must have crossed those tolls. I thought of how much fun
they must have had in Brooklyn Heights, and remembered all their stories. I thought... if
only this painting were hanging in mom’s upstate house... to remind her that “yesterday”
is only a few roads and a toll away. I started to read more about this painting. Then, I
saw the size... it was much taller than me every which way it could be turned. And with
the obvious talent of the artist, surely this was no painting I could afford. Then, I noticed
the title of this website... “Art Adoption.” What on earth was this?, I thought. Well, just
a little bit of reading later, I discovered... this was a gift. The entire website. It was a
gift of the heart. I immediately understood, as it was for this same reason I was helping
this recent divorce. I was compelled to write to the artist, sharing this story as best I
could. There was only one painting, and surely many of us who asked to adopt. But, I
wanted the artist to know how much his gift had meant to me in so many different ways.
To my great surprise, I received a wonderful email back from him, Mr. Aron
Namenwirth. He and his wife had chosen me as the adoptive “parent” to his beautiful piece of art. And... it was going to hang in mom’s upstate house, on the massive wall
having patiently waited.
It was then when I realized, had I listened to the “others” and not seized the moment in
helping this now ex-boyfriend, I never would have taken the time to open that email
about the art adoption program. And I never would have discovered that many times
good things do come back to us... just not necessarily from the person you expect.

I am so grateful for the program... just knowing how many other lives must have been
touched by art in this similar way. This summer I look forward to meeting Mr.
Namenwirth and his family, and continuing a friendship which all began with everything
I always feel truly is art... a sense of love for our fellow-man.

My sincere gratitude,

Christina Peters

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