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New exhibit at Witte delves into perceptions of the blind

One local 14-year-old boy is among the featured stories in a collection of resilience in the face of visual impairment.

SAN ANTONIO — The Witte Museum is showcasing a new exhibition gallery that features more than 40 people and their personal journey with blindness or vision loss. It's called 'My Heart is Not Blind,' the latest work by Michael Nye. There is a photograph of each person and a roughly five-minute audio recording interview to match with it.

Marise McDermott, CEO of the Witte Museum, spoke of Nye's photography and audio narration skills that brought the project to life. The artist spent seven years gathering interviews and spent several days with each person for the project.

"We urge people to sit on the benches, take the earphones and be in relationship to each individual. It's really a privilege, as they share their story of their lives and what a great privilege it is to understand the process of life. Each person has an astonishing life to share," McDermott said.

The people who are featured in the exhibit are from across the nation. They share misconceptions of the blind, their struggles with visual loss and how they overcame challenges.

14-year-old San Antonian Weston Wright and his mother, Christina took part in Nye's exhibit. Wright has been a strong advocate for the blind and visually impaired in the San Antonio area for years. He's the face of the annual 'Weston Wright Walk/Run' that benefits the San Antonio Lighthouse.

Wright said it was an honor to be chosen to be part of the gallery. He shared how blindness hasn't held him back in life.

"I have septo-optic dysplasia. That's a tongue twister. So, I'm completely blind," he said. "I play video games. I ride go-carts, I run outside. I do a bunch of stuff that people think blind people can't do."

My Heart is Not Blind will run through March 31. The Witte Museum will offer different programs that tie in with the exhibit. Visitors can meet the artist with an Evening with Michael Nye January 23, 6:00-8:00 p.m.

A program called Blind Truth will delve into the topic of blindness with community members who will share their personal experiences being blind. It's happening March 6, 6:00-8:00 p.m.

The museum is also offering a night of music and poetry called Sonic Expressions at Twilight that will be a one-of-a-kind event March 21, 6:00-8:00 p.m.