Art exhibit showcases works from NJ students with disabilities

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An art exhibit being held in New Jersey showcases artwork created by students with autism and disabilities.

Artfully Abled” will be held at The Peanut Gallery in Summit. This is the third year of the exhibit, which was organized by 16-year-old Zachary Brooks, who was inspired by his twin brother Jack, who has autism.

“I feel like people always stare and judge [my brother] for who he is on the outside,” Brooks says. “But people don’t get to know him on the inside.

Jack created some of the artwork that is on display – including some cute, cartoonish drawings of dogs.

RELATED: Autism Awareness Events in New Jersey 
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“He loves to draw and paint, and I wanted people to see what he’s able to create, and so people could recognize his ability,” says Brooks.

The twins’ aunt and mother say that they are very proud of both of the boys for what they have accomplished.

“[Zachary] realized from a young age, this is how Jack was born. He can’t help it, we can’t help it. We need to figure out how to help him,” says aunt Donna Puzella.

Brooks has been involved in helping to spread autism awareness since he was in the third grade. He says that he hopes that the art show will remind everyone to focus on people’s abilities instead of their limitations.

“I feel this art show helps to show people to respect others for who they are and to showcase the abilities of everyone, and see the positive in everybody,” he says.

The owner of The Peanut Gallery donated the space free of charge. About 90 different artists will be featured in the exhibit.

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