title. Portrait Bust of Dr. Emma Rochelle Wheeler

date. 2019

cityChattanooga , TN 

size. 16 3/4" H x 12" W x 9.5"D

Obtain your original, life-size, limited edition copy. 50 numbered & signed. (25 off-white resin and 25 cold-cast bronze resin) 

Late last year during my “12-week Artist Residency” at the Creative Discovery Museum I decided to create a piece that I could leave in the museum and contribute to the children visit experience, specially those who are blind, sight-impaired or physically challenged to explore art on their own. I thought it would be a great idea to create a tactile portrait of Dr. Emma Rochelle Wheeler, a historical and inspirational figure here in Chattanooga.


To successfully honor Dr. Wheeler as well as capture her likeness I used a photo from a clipping file from The Bessie Smith Cultural Center's Historical Collection, dated 6/14/1953. I also relied on my artistic human anatomy knowledge as well as on my experience as a (volunteer) forensic sketch artist back in Chicago. On the bottom left side I decided to incorporate an architectural sketch of the Walden Hospital. The institution that she established, owned, administered and loved for more than three decades. 


When you purchase your original, limited edition, copy you are obtaining the only life-size portrait bust of our beloved Dr. Emma Rochelle Wheeler. A percentage will go to support the crowdfunding campaign efforts to raise funds to cast 2 tactile resin copies to donate to both The Creative Discovery Museum, and The Bessie Smith Cultural Center. 

Why a tactile bust? 

I strongly believe getting to touch and feel art is so important because it helps us see it and appreciate it in a new way, and having a disability shouldn’t get in the way of experiencing art. This piece would not only benefit our kids with sight challenges but everyone as it would create sensory tactile exploring opportunities and address the importance of spatial learning.

Please donate to our Go Fund Me campaign 



© 2020 by Alex Paul Loza. All images are property of the artist.