Apia Art Shines a Light on Autism Through Her Exhibit

Published on April 11, 2023

Carolina Garcia AKA Apia Art

“Hi and Hello World: Love, Happiness and Inclusion”

When Carolina Garcia (a.k.a. Apia Art) first started to explore art, she used it as a way to communicate with her autistic son who was nonverbal at the time. Drawings and paintings became critical, as they were used to convey needs, wants, likes, dislikes, and emotions. Once communication lines were open, it led to a happier relationship and, ultimately, discovery of her son’s verbal language at age seven.

Today, what started out as a simple, but meaningful communication tool has now transformed into a full artistic portfolio for Apia -- including “Hi and Hello World: Love, Happiness and Inclusion” -- a public art exhibit currently on display at the Coral Springs Museum of Art that was directly inspired by her son’s diagnosis.

“It was a time, many years ago, when I needed strength to find a place of joy to connect with,” Apia said. “I felt it was imperative to show him that his life was worth it. That, in spite of everything, we were happier because he was in our lives.”

The whimsical, colorful, and interactive exhibit encourages people to find joy, love themselves, and connect with their inner child. It features, colorful characters, soft textures, and multilayered, cartoon-like landscapes that strive to evoke positive emotions.

Apia first connected with the Coral Springs Museum of Art by attending the openings of other artists and was immediately impressed by facility.

“The place is magnificent, and the art displayed there has always been incredible, Apia said.” It was an honor to have been invited to exhibit at the museum.

For Autism Awareness Month, Apia hopes that others will strive to understand and embrace the autistic population during Autism Awareness Month and beyond.

Carolina-Garcia-Apia-Art-2 “We need to be there for them, to cheer them for every milestone, no matter how small; our head needs to be clear; our heart needs to be open,” Apia said. “Having a more inclusive society starts by embracing who we are.”

“Hi and Hello World: Love, Happiness and Inclusion” is currently on display at the Coral Springs Museum of Art. Also, on display by Apia, is “Exaggerations of History,” a display that consists of 101 miniature portrait paintings of female artists from the 12th to 20th century, all enhanced with augmented reality. Both exhibits are on display through April 22.

More information can be found at CoralSpringsMuseum.org/Art-Exhibits/