PORT ROYAL - Local photographer and digital artist Eric Olson has developed a fusion of fashion and art with his newly released Swiss Rainbow scarf. The scarf is being used to fund the "Art with Heart" collection at the Montgomery County Hospice in honor of Olson's father, William, who recently passed away.
"He was a remarkable father, full of intelligence, love and creativity," Olson said. "As dad was dying, the Montgomery County Hospice came to help. They were so helpful, generous and understanding. I wanted to give something of myself in return."
Olson offered to curate an "Art with Heart" collection, designed to heal people with the positive power of art. The exhibit will include world class photographs donated by the Foundation for Photo/Art in Hospitals, Olson said.
Photo submitted by Eric Olson
A limited number of Eric Oldon’s Swiss Rainbow scarf are available for purchase. Proceeds will be used to fund the ‘Art with Heart’ collection at the Montgomery County Hospice in honor of Olson’s father, William, who recently passed away.
"'Art with Heart' is usually meant to help people heal and leave the hospital, but Casey House, the acute care hospital (of Montgomery County Hospice), is for people who are dying and have little hope of recovery," Olson said. "So our mission here is threefold: to soothe the patients, to provide hope to relatives and to lift the spirits of the staff."
Olson is looking to fund the project through the sale of his new Swiss Rainbow scarf, digitally developed from original photography and handmade in China. The scarf features a mixture of colors resulting from a digitally transformed photograph of rainbow swiss chard taken at a local farmers market.
"The 'origin photo' is selected for color and content and then goes through a special 'transformation' process I've developed," Olson said. "In the process, a new and unique image is developed, with interesting forms and shapes and a harmonious, complex color palette."
The scarves are available for purchase online at windmillcreekstudio.com for $75 each. Only 30 scarves are available, each made from silk satin and signed by the artist.
"The Rainbow Swiss Limited Edition Signature Scarf is both art and fashion, giving the buyer a chance to support art and do some good in the world," Olson said. "Unlike ordinary designs, the piece is wearable art, issued just like a fine art print edition, with a signed and numbered certificate of authenticity."
Olson predicts that the "Art with Heart" collection will cost roughly $900 and he hopes to fund the entire project through the sale of these scarves. The cost will cover photo printing and framing, Olson said. To limit spending, he will personally make each frame using top quality imported Italian frame molding, special UV protective glass and conservation grade materials.
If an establishment were to purchase, ship and install this 10-piece collection at normal prices, including professional framing, they'd end up investing something close to $6,250, Olson said.
Besides curating the collection, Olson will also contribute half of the photos, which will include images from Port Royal and the surrounding area.
"In all my travels I've never seen a more serene, calming and beautiful landscape than central Pennsylvania and I hope my photographs will carry that feeling into the hospice," Olson said. "I can't think of anything more appropriate for a collection of healing art."
Photos are also being personally donated by Elaine Poggi, founder and director of the Foundation for Photo/Art in Hospitals.
Olson is planning to have the "Art with Heart" collection completed and on display by early spring.