We have such talented community members and we’d like to introduce you to one of them, Whitney Causey! Whitney is the mother of M’Lynn (Ma-Lynn) who lives with AS. Whitney and her family reside in North Louisiana where she is an Assistant Professor of Studio Art at the Louisiana Tech University School of Design and serves as the Foundations Coordinator for the Studio and Graphic Design programs. Since her daughter’s diagnosis in 2017, Whitney has leveraged her artistic background in the Angelman syndrome community to challenge and eventually change the way Angelman syndrome is viewed and understood within society.
As an artist, Whitney paints portraits of individuals with Angelman syndrome and has a goal of collating her work into a book one day. She states “My current work is a reflection on Angelman syndrome and its effects. Through the portraits I am challenging ableist visual culture. The collection of portraits is a way to subvert normative expectations and cultivate a society where disabilities are no longer a defining characteristic. My work is a way to disrupt the connection between disability and ‘the ugly’.
Also, she is the Artistic Director on the Sibling Stories book series. She works hard to give her students the real-world experience of working with clients beyond the classroom, while also benefiting the AS community. So far 2 of her students have illustrated the current books and book 3 illustrations are currently underway. The sibling stories books can be found on Amazon.
As a professor at Louisiana Tech, Whitney has connected other departments at the university with Angelman syndrome to help bring to life the scientific understanding of the disorder. For example, the VISTA (Visual Integration of Science Through Art) Center at Louisiana Tech University has worked to bring the science of Angelman syndrome to life through pre-medical illustrations and scientific visualizations.
Whitney’s dedication and unique approach to bringing awareness to Angelman syndrome is truly amazing.
Learn more about Whitney and her work:
BayouLife | Art As Advocacy
Whitney’s artwork website
Louisiana Tech President Leslie K. Guice’s blog | M’Lynn, Inspiring a Community
Louisiana Tech VISTA | Whitney Causey’s Art Exhibit