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Thomas H. Windham Works Exhibited at Emporium Center

thomas windham
Watercolor paintings by Thomas H. Windham on display at Emporium Center

KNOXVILLE -- Watercolor paintings by Thomas H. Windham will be exhibited at the Emporium Center from September 2-30.

Windham's exhibit is extraordinary. He was diagnosed with Parkinson's disease ten years ago. Parkinson's disease is a disorder of the central nervous system that results from the loss of cells in various parts of the brain, including a region called the substantia nigra, located in the midbrain. The cells located in the substantia nigra produce dopamine, a chemical messenger responsible for transmitting signals within the brain that allow for coordination of movement. A loss of dopamine causes neurons to fire without normal control, causing a loss of coordination and difficulty performing everyday tasks like walking, shaving, buttoning a shirt, or writing a letter.

Windham has found that he can turn blank canvases into beautiful works of art by focusing his brain on controlling his pencil and/or brush long enough to create a line, image, or mark. The focus and control that is needed is not an easy task and requires great concentration. The use of vibrant colors to make the paintings, as well as the control achieved over the tremors to create a picture, cause a release of important neurochemicals in the brain, known as endorphins and seratonins. These neurochemicals help soothe the brain, decrease overall stress, and cause a feeling of well-being, making this newfound passion art therapy for Mr. Windham.

An opening reception will take place as part of First Friday activities on September 2 from 5:00 - 9:00 PM with complimentary hors d'oeuvres and wine. Gallery hours are Monday-Friday 9:00 AM – 5:00 PM. For more information, please contact the Arts & Culture Alliance at (865) 523-7543 or visit

Published August 27, 2011

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