Since the 1970s, April has been designated as National Autism Awareness Month. In honor of this designation, The Barrington Area Library is currently showing a collection of paintings made by Joe Rosenbloom, who is autistic, and a collection of photographs by Thomas Balsamo used in the book Souls: Beneath and Beyond Autism by Sharon Rosenbloom.

The public is invited to see the works and meet the artists at the Barrington Area Library on Friday, April 9 at 7 pm. No registration is required.

Artist Joe Rosenbloom was born with autism. Five years ago, he started to paint with Vesna Boscovic, president of South Barrington's La Citadelle, and his painting revealed a wealth of imagery and emotions. Later he worked with artist Bobi Vidovic who shared contemporary painting techniques with him. Rosenbloom's paintings capture the strength of his feelings hidden under the cover of autism.

Photographer Thomas Balsamo developed his love of photography at the early age of ten after receiving his first camera. His ability to photographically capture people became a career in 1978. His work has been featured on CNN, CBS, WGN and WLS television and published in Professional Photographer among other publications. He received The Autism Society of America's "Literary Work of the Year' award in 2003 for his photography and co-creation of the book Souls: Beneath and Beyond Autism.

The exhibition is organized by South Barrington's La Citadelle Art. It will be on display at the Barrington Area Library through May 1.