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An very recdent article by Olivia Goodwin

by Jorge James Martin Lacoste in News

April is Parkinson’s Awareness Month!

A Look at Jorge Lacoste

by Olivia Goowin ’12

When you think of an artist, you generally think of someone who has always had a passion for drawing and pursued it. You might think, this person has had many classes in art, and even pursued art in college. In many cases, you would be right—but not all cases. Jorge Lacoste of Ventura took a very different route.


Thirty year ago, Lacoste had been a confident new graduate from law school, when suddenly a mysterious disease gripped him. It left him so weak, that he could not even cross the street. It took many months and many doctors to finally diagnose his problem—Parkinson’s disease. Parkinson’s disease is a neurological disorder that affects the nervous system, and can even result in psychosis, and possibly dementia. At first, the news was devastating, but as time went on, he and his family were able to cope with the disease.


Looking back, Lacoste admits that without Parkinson’s disease he wouldn’t have discovered his hidden talent. Jorge Lacoste only discovered his passion for painting a mere four years ago. He found himself at work, when he suddenly looked down at his doodle to find that is was realistic and quite pretty. Lacoste was astounded. Later that day at home he sketched some more drawings, and to his surprise, he discovered something new about himself.


Lacoste was not the only one who noticed his newfound talent. Soon a worker offered to buy his first painting, and just like that, just like the doodle had come to life, so did Lacoste’s art career. The only problem was that he did not exactly know where to start. At first, Lacoste dabbled in water colors. When he found out that didn’t work for him, he experimented with all different types of paint, until he found acrylics. To this day, that’s all he paints with. One of his greatest joys is starting a new painting.


Today, Jorge Lacoste is a lucky man with many gifts; a beautiful wife and grown children, and a growing art career with increased recognition. In fact, Lacoste would even count Parkinson’s as a gift. He truly believes that being blindsided by Parkinson’s is what makes him the man and the artist he is today. A man who couldn’t even cross the street, he now walks tall, thanks to his determined spirit. Jorge’s story along with his beautiful and diverse artwork now touches many people today. His art can be seen hanging from many homes, from lucky and happy buyers, to his neurologist of eight years, Dr. Robert Hutchman. Lacoste’s persistence and spirit is something we can all admire.

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