Pamela's Story

Watercolor artist Pamela Alderman After raising four children, I returned to painting in my mid-forties. It wasn't easy to start a second career midlife. I struggled to find ways to sustain my work, and I struggled with limits in my skill level. Many times, I wanted to quit. But my dear friends propelled me forward with their undying love and support.

About the same time, ArtPrize launched—a huge international art competition that attracts about a half a million visitors. Over the next ten years while participating in ArtPrize, I began to create a new kind of artist/citizen work that invited audience collaboration. I discovered that my artwork lets others speak and respond.

As I continue to focus on the audience and their needs, thousands of visitors have personally responded to my interactive healing installations by hanging notes, adding wishes and prayers, signing names, and tying ribbons. These individuals infuse my work with synergy and hope. Throughout all the challenges, my friends and the enthusiastic participants have taught me much about life and my work. It has been an amazing journey traveling with them—towards healing.

Pamela Alderman
Pamela has a very unique gift for connecting deeply with people through her artwork. There is something in her work that is deeply magnetic and brings out the vulnerability in all of us.

See more of Pamela's endorsements…

Even the cat loves interactive art!

Exhibitions and Collections

Selected Solo Exhibitions

  • 2018

    The Scarlet Cord, Cornerstone University; Grand Rapids, Michigan
    The Scarlet Cord, Miss Michigan Scholarship Pageant, Holiday Inn; Muskegon, Michigan

  • 2017

    The Scarlet Cord, Manasseh Project #StopThisTraffic Conference, Meijer Gardens, Grand Rapids, Michigan
    The Scarlet Web and Night Cries, Grand Valley State University; Allendale, Michigan

  • 2016

    The Scarlet Cord, Grand Valley State University; Allendale, Michigan

  • 2015

    Courage Ablaze, Michigan State University; East Lansing, Michigan
    The Scarlet Cord, Acton Institute; Grand Rapids, Michigan
    The Scarlet Cord, Roosevelt Row; Phoenix, Arizona
    Courage Ablaze, Van Singel Fine Arts Center; Byron Center, Michigan
    Courage Ablaze, Cathedral Square Center; Grand Rapids, Michigan

  • 2014

    The Scarlet Cord, North Central Michigan College; Petoskey, Michigan
    Courage Ablaze, Cornerstone University; Grand Rapids, Michigan

  • 2013

    Healing Reflections, Claystone Clinic; Grand Rapids, Michigan
    Healing Reflections, University Club; Grand Rapids, Michigan

  • 2012

    Courage Ablaze, Macy's, Rivertown Mall; Grand Rapids, Michigan
    Healing Reflections, The Hartley Center; Grand Rapids, Michigan

  • 2011

    Healing Reflections, Bruce and Mary Leep Gallery; Grand Rapids, Michigan
    Healing Reflections, Coopersville Farm Museum; Coopersville, Michigan

  • 2010

    Guest Artist Series, St Mary's Health Care; Grand Rapids, Michigan
    Healing Reflections, Sky Walk Gallery, Children's Hospital of Wisconsin; Milwaukee, Wisconsin

Selected Group Exhibitions

  • 2018

    Broken Wings, ArtPrize, Grand Rapids Public Museum; Grand Rapids, Michigan (Coming in September)

  • 2017

    Let Go, ArtPrize, Amway Grand Plaza Hotel; Grand Rapids, Michigan (Top 25 in Time-Based at ArtPrize 2017)
    Festival 2017 Regional Arts Exhibition (Second Generation of Festival Award)
    Live Coverage, Urban Institute of Contemporary Arts; Grand Rapids, Michigan

  • 2016

    Hometown Hero II, Reflections of Generosity, Pentagon, Washington D.C.
    Color Me Orange—Color Me Kind, ArtPrize, Gerald R. Ford Presidential Museum; Grand Rapids, Michigan (Top 25 in Time-Based at ArtPrize 2016)
    Live Coverage, Urban Institute of Contemporary Arts; Grand Rapids, Michigan

  • 2015

    Hometown Hero, ArtPrize, Amway Grand Plaza Hotel; Grand Rapids, Michigan (Top 20 Finalist and 3rd Place in Time-Based at ArtPrize 2015)

  • 2014

    The Scarlet Cord, ArtPrize, Gerald R. Ford Presidential Museum; Grand Rapids, Michigan (Top 25 Installation Finalist at ArtPrize 2014)
    West Michigan Area Show; Kalamazoo Institute of the Arts; Kalamazoo, Michigan

  • 2013

    Wing and a Prayer, ArtPrize, Amway Grand Plaza Hotel; Grand Rapids, Michigan (Top 50 Finalist at ArtPrize 2013)
    Regional Arts Exhibition; Grand Rapids, Michigan (LOMA Award)
    Women's Works, Northwest Area Arts Council; Woodstock, Illinois (First Place Award)

  • 2012

    Courage Ablaze, ArtPrize, Amway Grand Plaza Hotel; Grand Rapids, Michigan (Top 100 Finalist at ArtPrize 2012)
    Grand Valley State University Women's Center; Allendale, Michigan

  • 2011

    Braving the Wind, ArtPrize, Amway Grand Plaza Hotel; Grand Rapids, Michigan
    35th National Exhibition; Transparent Watercolor Society of America, Kenosha Public Museum; Kenosha, Wisconsin

  • 2010

    Woman in Red, ArtPrize, Amway Grand Plaza Hotel; Grand Rapids, Michigan
    110th Philadelphia Water Color Society International Exhibition; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

  • 2009

    National Juried Art Exhibition; Hilton Head, South Carolina
    ArtPrize, Open Concepts Gallery; Grand Rapids, Michigan

Short Film Productions

  • 2015

    The Scarlet Cord, a collaborative work by Artist Pamela Alderman, Producer Rochelle Raimão, and Director Simon Scionka

The Scarlet Cord Film Screenings

  • 2018

    Miss Michigan Scholarship Pageant, Holiday Inn; Muskegon, Michigan

  • 2017

    The Scarlet Cord, Manasseh Project #StopThisTraffic Conference, Meijer Gardens, Grand Rapids, Michigan (October 6, 2017)
    Meijer Honors College, Grand Valley State University; Allendale, Michigan
    2017 Noontime Series, Calvin College, Grand Rapids, Michigan

  • 2016

    Kent County Courthouse, Grand Rapids, Michigan
    Waterras Hall, Chiyoda Ku, Tokyo, Japan (Japanese version)
    Culture Care Gathering, Brehm Center, Fuller Theological Seminary, Pasadena, California
    Manasseh Project, Grand Rapids, Michigan
    Grand Valley State University, Allendale, Michigan
    Detroit International Human Trafficking Summit, with Liberty and Freedom Now, Cobo Center, Detroit, Michigan

  • 2015

    Grand Rapids Public Museum; Grand Rapids, Michigan

Selected Professional Affiliations

  • 2009 - Present

    Volunteer Artist and Ambassador, American Cancer Association's Hope Lodge, American Heart Association's Go Red For Women, Blue Star Mothers, Cancer Center at Metro Health of Grand Rapids, Michigan; Gilda's Club, Girl Scouts of Michigan Shore to Shore, Hope Network, International Justice Mission, Lakeshore Human Trafficking Task Force, Leukemia and Lymphoma Society's Team in Training, Mission 22, Miss Michigan Scholarship Pageant, Navy-Marine Corps Relief Society of Washington, DC, Shared Hope International, StreetLightUSA, Susan G. Komen, Women at Risk International, Camp Pendleton Military Spouses Association

Selected Collaborations

  • 2018

    Open Hands helping Babette's Feast an off-broadway production; New York, New York
    Color Me Orange—Color Me Kind with national youth speaker Jeff Veley as an educational tool for Campus Peace-Building Initiative; Grand Rapids, Michigan
    The Scarlet Cord Film with StreetLightUSA as an educational tool for sex-trafficking awareness and healing; Phoenix, Arizona

  • 2017

    The Scarlet Cord installation with Saugatuck High School students; Saugatuck, Michigan

  • 2016

    The Scarlet Cord Film with Judge Patricia Gardner as an educational tool for juveniles; Grand Rapids, Michigan

  • 2015

    The Scarlet Cord with the Doll Box Campaign, Shared Hope International; Phoenix, Arizona
    The Scarlet Cord Film with producer Rochelle Raimão and videographer Simon Scionka; Phoenix, Arizona
    The Scarlet Cord installation with StreetLightUSA; Phoenix, Arizona

2014

The Scarlet Cord installation with Women At Risk International; Grand Rapids, Michigan
The Scarlet Cord Audio Collage with Shared Hope International; Grand Rapids, Michigan

Selected Permanent Collections

  • 2018

    Wolverine Building Group of Grand Rapids, Michigan
    Kent County Courthouse of Grand Rapids, Michigan

  • 2017

    Manasseh Project of Grand Rapids, Michigan
    Grand Rapids Public Museum School of Grand Rapids, Michigan
    Lone Pine Elementary School of Bloomfield Hills, Michigan
    Kentwood Public Schools of Kentwood, Michigan
    Westwood Middle School of Grand Rapids, Michigan
    William C. Abney Academy of Grand Rapids, Michigan
    Saranac Community Schools of Saranac, Michigan
    Southwest Community Campus of Grand Rapids, Michigan
    Wedgewood Christian Services of Grand Rapids, Michigan
    Libertas Foundation of Kalamazoo, Michigan

  • 2016

    Warriors Heart of San Antonio, Texas
    Grand Rapids Home for Veterans of Grand Rapids, Michigan
    Holland Home of Grand Rapids, Michigan
    Bethany Refugee and Immigrant Services, Grand Rapids, Michigan
    Reflections of Generosity, Covington, Kentucky

  • 2015

    Hope Network for Autism of Grand Rapids, Michigan
    Grand Rapids Police Department of Grand Rapids, Michigan
    Grand Rapids Fire Department of Grand Rapids, Michigan
    Kentwood Police Department of Kentwood, Michigan

  • 2014

    Ronald McDonald House Charities of Milwaukee, Wisconsin

  • 2013

    D.A. Blodgett and St. John's Home of Grand Rapids, Michigan
    Children's Hospital of Boston, Massachusetts

  • 2012

    Lurie Children's Hospital of Chicago, Illinois
    Grand Valley State University of Allendale, Michigan

  • 2011

    American Mission Hospital of Manama, Bahrain
    Children's Hospital of Minneapolis, Minnesota
    Children's Hospital of St. Paul, Minnesota
    Seattle Children's Hospital of Seattle, Washington

  • 2010

    American Cancer Society Hope Lodge of Grand Rapids, Michigan
    Children's Hospital of Denver, Colorado
    Children's Hospital of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
    C.S. Mott Children's Hospital of Ann Arbor, Michigan
    Rady Children's Hospital of San Diego, California
    Rainbow Babies and Children's Hospital of Cleveland, Ohio
    The Heart and Vascular Center at Metro Health of Grand Rapids, Michigan

  • 2009

    Helen DeVos Children's Hospital of Grand Rapids, Michigan

Selected Presentations

  • 2018

    “Broken Wings: A Decade of ArtPrize.” Interview with Shelley Irwin, WGVU Radio; Grand Rapids, Michigan
    “Healing in Arts: A Decade of ArtPrize.” Voices: A Community History Project; WKTV; Grand Rapids, Michigan
    “The Scarlet Cord: Healing and Freedom for Sex-trafficked Children.” Holland Home; Grand Rapids, Michigan
    “Nine years of ArtPrize Success” with Anna Donahue and Pamela Alderman, Lowell Arts Center; Lowell, Michigan

  • 2017

    “The Scarlet Cord: Healing for Sex-trafficked Children,” Manasseh Project #StopThisTraffic Conference, Meijer Gardens, Grand Rapids, Michigan
    “The Scarlet Cord: Healing for Sex-trafficked Children,” Grand Valley State University; Allendale, Michigan
    “An ArtPrize Artist's Journey,” CALL Noontime Series, Calvin College, Grand Rapids, Michigan
    “Healing in Arts: A Pathway to Flourishing,” Noontime Series, Calvin College, Grand Rapids, Michigan

  • 2016

    “Healing in Arts: A Pathway to Flourishing,” Q Commons, Ladies Literary Club of Calvin College; Grand Rapids, Michigan
    “Hometown Hero II: A Legacy of Hope,” Defense Suicide Prevention Office, Pentagon; Washington D.C.
    “Healing in Arts,” International Culture Care: Music, Beauty, and Creativity, Fuller Theological Seminary; Pasadena, California
    “The Scarlet Cord: Healing for Sex Trafficked Children,” Grand Valley State University; Allendale, Michigan
    “The Scarlet Cord: Healing for Sex Trafficked Children,” Manasseh Project; Grand Rapids, Michigan

  • 2015

    “Courage Ablaze: The Women and Children of Congo,” Residential College of Arts and Humanities, Michigan State University; East Lansing, Michigan
    “The Scarlet Cord: The Evils of Human Trafficking,” Acton Institute; Grand Rapids, Michigan
    “The Scarlet Cord Film Premiere and Sex Trafficking Panel,” Grand Rapids Public Museum; Grand Rapids, Michigan (Partnering with Women At Risk International)
    “Great Women, Great Wisdom: Courage Ablaze.” Cathedral Square Center; Grand Rapids, Michigan
    “The Scarlet Cord.” Interview with Pat McReynolds, CBS 5, KPHO; Phoenix, Arizona
    “ArtPrize Piece Headed to the Super Bowl.” Interview with WZZM TV; Grand Rapids, Michigan

  • 2014

    “ArtPrize 2014: The Scarlet Cord.” Interview with Andy Rent, WTRV Radio; Grand Rapids, Michigan
    "ArtPrize 2014: The Scarlet Cord.” Interview with Shelley Irwin, WGVU Radio; Grand Rapids, Michigan
    “Courage Ablaze.” Grand Rapids Community College; Grand Rapids, Michigan

  • 2013

    “ArtPrize and Autism.” Interview with Michigan is Listening, WJR Radio; Detroit, Michigan
    “Healing Power of Art.” Grand Rapids Public Museum; Grand Rapids, Michigan
    “Ask the ArtPrize Artist.” Interview with Shelley Irwin, WGVU Television; Grand Rapids, Michigan

  • 2012

    ArtPrize Interview with Shelley Irwin, WGVU Radio; Grand Rapids, Michigan
    “ArtPrize: Courage Ablaze.” Bethany Refugee Services; Grand Rapids, Michigan

Selected Teaching Experience

  • 2018

    Broken Wings, Our World View, and Social Justice.” Cornerstone University at ArtPrize; Grand Rapids, Michigan
    Open Hands and Babette's Feast.” Elementary schools of Denver, Colorado

  • 2017

    “The Scarlet Cord: Healing for Sex-trafficked Children.” Saugatuck High School; Saugatuck, Michigan
    “Healing in Arts & ArtPrize Mock Up.” Grand Rapids Public Museum School, Grand Rapids, Michigan

  • 2016

    “The Scarlet Cord.” Kent County Courthouse; Grand Rapids, Michigan

  • 2015

    “The Scarlet Cord.” Cornerstone University; Grand Rapids, Michigan

  • 2014

    “Plein Aire Portraiture.” Godwin Heights Middle School; Wyoming, Michigan

  • 2013

    “The Gift of Watercolor.” Battle Creek Art Center; Battle Creek, Michigan

  • 2012

    “Watercolor Fun.” Central Forrest International School; Tokyo, Japan