Austria

Josef Habeler

Josef Habeler was born on 25 December 1944 in Wiener Neustadt. In December 2000 he fell off a tree and suffered a dislocation fracture of the cervical spine. He can no longer use his arms or legs. A several-week-long stay at the hospital was followed by nine months of rehabilitation. In July 2001, during the rehabilitation period, he realised that life could be worth living again. He discovered a different side of his life to which he did not have access previously – painting with the mouth. It fascinated him to such a degree that he became caught up in it. Mouth painting helped him to bear his fate and even made him forget it for hours.

Paulus Ploier

Paulus Ploier was born on 4 November 1965 in Nussdorf am Attersee. In 1981, he was injured in a diving accident and became paralysed. Since his accident, he has not been able to use his arms and legs. In the rehabilitation centre, he discovered his creative talent for painting with his mouth. In his first phase, he learnt how to paint with his mouth as an autodidact. From 1987 to 1990 Paulus Ploier took art and painting lessons. In 1990 he was granted a Scholarship by the association and four years later he became an Associate Member. In 1999 AMFPA granted him Full Membership.

Heinz Halwachs

Heinz Halwachs was born without arms on 18 August 1961 in Loipersdorf. The cause of this disability was the thalidomide drug prescribed for his mother during pregnancy. He made his first attempts to grip, to play and to write using his feet during childhood. When he was about 20 years old he started to paint with his right foot, receiving training from an academic painter in Vienna. Much about the same time he was also granted a scholarship by the Association and became a Regular AMFPA Member in 1992.

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