Visual Artists with Disabilities and Voice Augmentation Tools

Listen (37 min)

Vanessa Castro and her 'Salsa Shoe' Painting

Vanessa Castro and her ‘Salsa Shoe’ Painting

Vanessa Castro and Tamar Mag Raine, visual artists with disabilities, talk about their paintings, assemblages, mosaics and other work.


They are two of the five artists with disabilities who are participating in the KPFA Crafts Fair, Dec. 20-21 in Richmond, California.  Keep reading for the names of the other artists and links to their websites.

Tamar Mag Raine

Tamar Mag Raine

The artists are assisted by two non-profit organizations that assist artists with developmental disabilities, Alchemia and Casa Allegra. 


Tamar Mag Raine is assisted by Lauren Hiltebeitel who uses a technique called echoing to translate her speech.  Her business manager, Meghan Dunn, was also on hand to talk about Casa Allegra’s program for hopeful entrepreneurs living with disabilities.


Mia Brown of Downtown Mia Brown, Julia Pozgai of Pansy Creations, and Day Marrow, three other artists with disabilities, will also be offering their work for sale at the KPFA Crafts Fair.

Then the ever-stylish Lateef Mcleod shows up to talk about his Alternative and Augmentative Communication (ACC) device.  He demonstrates what it is like to order a pizza with one of these marvelous pieces of technology.    This segment was originally produced for International Media Project / Making Contact, one of our sister programs on KPFA.  Lateef Mcleod spent time in their studios as a storytelling fellow earlier this year.

Lateef Mclead has been our guest before.  You can hear him discuss race and disability here and here.  He also read a poem for our mini-literary festival here.

Mary Berg

Mary Berg


Mary Berg, long-time music producer and host of Sunday morning’s “Musical Offering” of classical music died in her Berkeley home late last week.  We offer a tribute with some details about her late-life disability.


Finally, here’s a treat for you on-line readers.  A photo of the beautiful mosaic which covers a small wall in Tamar Mag Raines work room. 

The Joy of Leaves by Tamar Mag Raine. Polymer on wood. Over 350 individual leaves, each one different in color and pattern.

This program was produced and hosted by Adrienne Lauby, with production assistance from Doyle Saylor and Shelley Berman.

 Original air date: December 5, 2014
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