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Local artist wins overall ‘Best of Show’ in Art is Ageless® competition

Robert Ayer isn’t into art for the glory or the accolades. In fact, most people who know him aren’t even aware that he draws.

“I don’t display my art or sell it,” said Robert. “It’s always just been about relaxation for me. I just do it as recreation—it keeps me off the streets at night.”

That all changed when a woman at Robert’s senior community saw some of his artwork and told him about PMMA’s Art is Ageless® competition.

“She had me select a piece and then she entered it for me,” said Robert. “The rest is history I guess.”

History indeed.

Robert’s drawing, “Geisha Girl,” was named overall Best of Show in the amateur division, beating entries from 14 other PMMA® communities across Kansas and Missouri.

“Just to find out I won anything was amazing,” said Robert. “First, I was told that I won the drawing part of the competition and then when I heard about best of show … that was something special.”

What makes it even more special is the fact that Robert finished the piece just a week before he had a stroke—a stroke that left Robert unable to draw with his right hand.

But that hasn’t stopped Robert, he recently began drawing again—this time with his left hand.

“It’s gotten pretty good and will probably be the same quality as my other work,” said Robert. “It takes a lot longer, but I’m able to get some work done.”

Asked how he thought his success in the competition might affect him going forward, Robert didn’t hold back.

“I’ll probably start bragging that I’m an award-winning artist,” said Robert. “It’s the only thing I’ve won in my life except for a bird house I painted when I was eight years old as a Cub Scout—that was a long time ago.”

To learn more about Art is Ageless, or to see more of this year’s winning artwork, visit

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