Updated: Oct 20, 2022
An art gallery created by autistic artists.
An interview with Meiry Geraldo, founder of Galeria Aut.
Multisensory Stories are delighted to have collaborated with Meiry Geraldo, the founder of GALERIAAUT who provided many of the fabulous artworks created by their autistic artists for the new release 'The Rainforest' A Multisensory Adventure
I caught up with Meiry for a chat
Hi Meiry, tell me about Aut Gallery 'The Aut Gallery is an art gallery made by autistic people. It was founded in 2014, inspired by my son and is a virtual space.
Today we have more than 300 autistic artists from all regions of Brazil and other countries such as: Portugal, Cuba, United States, Scotland, India, and Uruguay. Our collection has more than 2,000 works. There are photos, videos, drawings, paintings, sculptures, literature, and music all made by autistic creators from the most varied degrees of TEA. One of the goals of our gallery is greater engagement and participation of society for greater awareness of the topic. In addition to raising self-esteem and promoting the appreciation of the art of autistic people with, thus giving them the opportunity to participate and access in our society. Our proposal is to exhibit the works of art of our autistic artists, as well as to provide information, knowledge, make people aware and propose at least reflections on the subject. We do this through collective and individual, virtual and physical exhibitions; art and music contests; lives with professionals, with autistic and family members. In 2021, we held an International Seminar on Art, Education and Autism and an International Webinar on Music Therapy, Psychology and Autism (both available on our YouTube channel). We have a radio show called Audio Connection, which airs every Saturday at 4 pm (Brasilia time) on Bravo Web Rádio (@bravowebradio). We participate in events, meetings, lives writing and promoting autism on our website and on our Facebook page, Instagram and our YouTube channel'
How did the Galeria start, what gave you the idea? 'On any given day of the week, I watched a “different and bizarre” video by my 8-year-old son Artur. A video that caught my attention. Unlike anything he had ever seen or dreamed of doing. He filmed his own feet inside the trampoline. Lying down, he put his legs on a Pilates ball that was on the trampoline and started tapping his feet. On that occasion I watched a film which shows a painting with several drops of paint, and which was sold for “thousands of dollars”. At that moment I remembered the video exhibition I saw in Madrid, at the Reina Sofia Museum, where there were several videos that portray the faces of elderly people sleeping, looking, so I thought: “Why not expose my son’s video?” “Why not create a space for autistic people?” And so, the “Galeria Aut” was born.'
Can you remember the first artwork you displayed in Galeria Aut? 'Yes, that was the video my son made, filming his little feet inside the trampoline.'
What is your favorite thing about your job? 'The happiness of our autistic artists for the recognition, appreciation and exhibition of their artistic productions.'
What is your proudest moment with Galeria Aut? 'There are many.... Exhibitions (in public spaces) and virtual; our art and music contests; the radio show on Bravo Web Rádio; the Seminar and the Webinar. The Johnson & Johnson contact who held a 3D exhibition of autistic artists at Galeria Aut and participated with prizes for all participants of the 7th Art Contest for People with Autism – GAUT. When Galeria Autista participated in the book “Interdisciplinary Attention to Autism”, organized by the coordinators of PRAIA - Interdisciplinary Attention Program to Autism - from UFMG - Federal University of Minas Gerais, Ana Amélia Cardoso and Maria Luísa Magalhães Nogueira. Now being featuring in and contributing artwork of our autistic artists in the book “The Rainforest- A Multisensory Exploration”, at the invitation of Victoria Navin, founder of Rhyming Multisensory Stories. '
Have you always had an interest in art? 'I've always been interested in music. Since I was a child, I wanted to play the piano and my mother made it possible for me to learn. As for art, I learned to appreciate when I travelled to Europe in 1993. On that trip to Spain and Italy, I realised that art was breathed there! Art was everywhere.'
What is your favorite artwork/artist in history? 'It's very difficult to say... There is no choice. I really like Van Gogh, Claude Monet, Joan Miró, Tarsila do Amaral, Romero Brito, Pablo Picasso, Fernando Botero, Alfredo Volpi and Salvador Dali.'
Can you draw, paint or create art? 'I don't do paintings or drawings, but I've already composed some songs. Here is a song I composed called "My son" Music: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sgm2WFK4NIQ&ab_channel=GaleriaAut
Are you working on any interesting projects? 'We have just finished working on the book 'The Rainforest' by Victoria Navin of Rhyming Multisensory Stories and are currently preparing for the events that will be held next year.'
What's your favorite thing about the rainforest? 'The vegetation! The forest is beautiful! I had the opportunity to go to Manaus once, but I only saw her from the forest during the flight. A big green sea... It's dense, it has many trees. Some trees found in the forest are andiroba, Pupunha, açaí, rubber, mahogany, cedar, kapok, and chestnut. The Amazon today is very important to our planet, as it brings moisture to all of South America, influencing rainfall and helping to stabilize the global climate. It has immense biodiversity, in addition to housing the largest tropical forest and the largest watershed in the world.'
Do you have a favorite rainforest anima, bird or insect? 'I really like birds, especially Toucans and Macaws.'
Which three famous/historical figures would you invite to a meal and why? 'Leonardo da Vinci – for all his invaluable contributions to science, art and his creativity as an inventor. Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart – for his brilliance as one of the world's greatest composers. Tarsila do Amaral – for her contribution to Brazilian art. One of the main artists of modernism. Tarsila showed through her art social themes where, for example, she questions the problems arising from industrialization and capitalism with the work “Segunda Classe” and the Brazilian indigenous theme portrayed in the work “Batizado de Macunaíma”.'
What advice would you give your younger self? 'Don't be impulsive, reflect, observe and learn from everyone around you.'
What three things would you take to a desert island? 'A satellite phone, a lifeboat with a paddle and a big box of matches!'
....about what to take to the island, it's just things, right? Because if they were things and people, I would take my husband.... the satellite phone and the inflatable boat with rowing oars!'
Below are some of the fantastic works by Autistic Artists at GALERIAAUT
Click below to view more images!
Mary Geraldo Bio
Meiry graduated in Music Therapy from Faculdade Marcelo Tupinambá in 1992, with specialisation in Applied Psychodrama, from Instituto Sedes Sapientiae -1994; mother of an autistic adolescent and Councilor of COMUC – Municipal Council for Cultural Policy of Belo Horizonte, whose term runs until 10/05/22.
Meiry founded GALERIA AUT in 2014, creating a virtual space for information and sharing the Art of autistic people. She currently composes the board of ASATEA-MG as 2nd Treasurer and is part of CADDA.MG Commission of Associations for the Defense of Autistic Rights. She works with clinical care for autistic children and adolescents, in addition to participating in various cultural and community projects.
Contacts and Links
Thank you Meiry:)