Post Content

"Stephie and Izzie" by Brogan Joe Murphy: Acrylic on Linen color portrait of young woman smiling, seated in a wheelchair. Her arm is outstretched, holding a tennis ball out for a golden lab dog. They are outdoors on a green lawn with trees in the background.

“Stephie and Izzie”

Artist: Brogan Joe Murphy, Watertown

Description: 36” x 24” Acrylic on Linen

Artist Statement: My portrait of Stephie shows her as I know her, ever ebullient, playing with her constant companion, her service dog, “Izzie”. I am a paraplegic, and I met Stephie and Izzie through my work as a Peer Mentor at Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital. Stephie was a bright, athletic ten year old when she was struck with a rare neurological disorder called distonia. As a result, her muscles progressively deteriorated, contracting in painful spasms, and leaving her body twisted. She was so contracted when I met her she was unable to sit up at all, driving her wheelchair fully supine, in an almost in a fetal position. Recent success with Botox injections have allowed her to sit up for the first time in years. Numerous operations and near constant pain have not kept her down. In spite of repeated procedures and cross country visits to neurological specialists, she finished high-school, attended the University of Illinois, and after graduating, found a full time job in Boston. As if that was not enough, she founded her own non-profit group, “Path-Ways”, for the purpose of arranging social engagements for the disabled. Stephie was my first thought when I considered a subject for “Breaking Barriers.” I have met few people who have overcome more barriers than Stephie. My painting shows her in a moment of joy with Izzie. Behind her, in the near distance, a grass covered path leads up to a fence, representing the many barriers she has overcome, and perhaps those that may still lie ahead.

About the Artist: In 1978, Murphy began his lifelong study of painting with David Hardy at the Ateilier School of Classical Realism. Trained in methods and materials of the old masters, Murphy is equally at home with portraiture, landscape, still life, and figurative work. Murphy has participated is successful group and solo exhibitions in Boston, New York, Washington D.C., Minneapolis, Tulsa, Sacramento and San Francisco. His works are found in prominent public and private collections, including the White House, and the Maryland State House. In 1993 Murphy suffered a serious back injury, eventually requiring two spinal fusions. A mishap during the second surgery left him a paraplegic. In spite of his paralysis, Murphy continues to paint from his studio in Watertown, Massachusetts. A gallery of his work can be seen on his website at broganjoemurphy.com.

Recent Posts

United States: “ADApt Your Website”: Key Takeaways from the Domino’s Website Litigation posted on Nov 22

Companies should be mindful of the ADA when designing their websites. If the website provides a connection to a good or service offered at a physical location, then the ADA applies, and the company should ensure that persons with disabilities have sufficient and effective access   …Continue Reading United States: “ADApt Your Website”: Key Takeaways from the Domino’s Website Litigation

Federal Court Decision in Gomez v. GNC Highlights Importance of Choosing an Experienced Accessibility Expert posted on Nov 15

Level Access published an article that focuses on a court decision out of the Southern District of Florida and discusses the importance of hiring an experienced accessibility expert in web accessibility cases under Title III of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), as well as   …Continue Reading Federal Court Decision in Gomez v. GNC Highlights Importance of Choosing an Experienced Accessibility Expert

Ninth Circuit Ruling Bolsters ADA Website Accessibility Suits posted on Nov 7

Lexology recently released an article stating that he Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals recently decided that company websites may violate the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) if they are inaccessible to consumers with visual, auditory, or other disabilities and recognized that the WCAG “have been widely   …Continue Reading Ninth Circuit Ruling Bolsters ADA Website Accessibility Suits