Arts for the Aging's Visual Identity

The Inspiration

Scientist, sculptor, and philanthropist Lolo Sarnoff never let age define her. At 72, she founded Greater Washington, D.C.’s Arts for the Aging. She was inspired by studies that showed less agitation and improved moods in older adults with Alzheimer’s disease involved in art classes. Lolo conducted these workshops at the request of long-time colleagues at the National Institutes of Health. She was remarkably driven. Born in Frankfurt, Germany in 1916, she bridged worlds throughout her lifetime, blending her passions into faithful support of those who are vulnerable. In 1988, she founded Arts for the Aging, which trains professional artists to engage older adults and care partners—especially those who are vulnerable and underserved— in health improvement and life enhancement through regular participation in the multidisciplinary arts. Lolo Sarnoff served for many years as the organization’s Chair, and she was on the Board until her retirement, at age 96. Many in Washington know Lolo because she was a devotee of countless artistic, scientific, and community endeavors. Among her many decorations, Lolo Sarnoff was named by the French Government a Chevalier de l’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres for her dedication to science, the arts, and cultural life in Washington.

The Design Inspiration

Lolo Sarnoff’s sculpture, 3 Steps to Success, and art created by Arts for the Aging participants (below)

The logo can be interpreted as leaves, or a flame—representing growth, beauty, and a story of enduring reinvention.

Despite her longtime fascination with fiber optics—her sculpture The Flame resides at the Kennedy Center Opera House—many of Lolo Sarnoff’s sculptures are without light. The plexiglas works “echo themselves in a series of repeating forms. Compared to early works with changing lights and colors, these … are stationary. They demand the viewer’s eye to move as one becomes involved with the work. Indeed, this concern with motion is Sarnoff’s way of giving life to art, and of having art embrace life.” (Peter C. Marzio, Director, Corcoran Gallery of Art, 1982).