A Few Strokes of the Past in an Artist Who Lost Her Memory

When professional artist Lonnie Sue Johnson was stricken with viral encephalitis, a disease that severely impacted her memory and halted her career in its tracks.  However, she recovered physically and then surprised experts by drawing pictures, while lacking a memory to draw from.  Her mother and professional artist Margaret Kennard Johnson slowly taught her the joy of creating art for a second time.  Said Lonnie Sue, “Your memories come back, and you get more ideas. It’s a lovely way to share things, and reach people all over the pleasing planet.” Since her art still reflects the same exuberance she is known for, researchers at Johns Hopkins now wonder what the relationship is between memory, identity and creativity. 
The New York Times, September 19, 2011

Written By: Roni Caryn Rabin

More Information>