Getting Up: A Story of Hope, Cutting Edge Technology and Survival Against Insurmountable Circumstances

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Getting Up: The Tempt One Story documents the against all odds story and indomitable spirit of internationally known ALS paralyzed street artist Tony "Tempt One" Quan.

Getting Up, directed by Caskey Ebeling, is the story of Tony Quan, LA's version of Keith Harring, who after being diagnosed with the degenerative disease ALS, found a way, through the help of his family, friends, and cutting edge technology, to rise, in mind, above the prison that had become his body.

Getting Up begins with a computerized voice over recalling a dream where Tempt and a friend were painting in the LA River and a stray man chased them away. Memories comfort the old and delight the young  and can even carry one through deep loneliness, but memories of running, of painting or owning the street can only bring sorrow to one imprisoned in a lifeless body with only thoughts.

Tony Quan, born in East Los Angeles, of Mexican-Chinese decent, took the name Tempt One in the early 1980's. His story resonates with the despair associated with the debilitating diseases, the despair of the system, the hope, courage and loyalty of family and friends who refused to give up on him. Knowing he would never "be healed" or even walk again, when it would be understandable to be overwhelmed they're dedicated to his care and creating a fuller existence. 

For eight years, after the disease claimed his body and his voice, he would communicate through eye affirmations, blink once; blink twice, and a rudimentary alphabet chart. Tediously, his father and dedicated friends would visit and through this communication system would have conversation. Angst, a true friend, personified devotion, and stayed on after the diagnosis, through the years Tempt couldn't respond, Angst talked, seemingly about nothing, and still he stayed.

Long term medical care is expensive and Tempt's family did everything they could so they had a benefit. Enter Caskey Ebeling and her husband, Mick. Attending a gallery show and finding out about Tempt's situation they felt drawn to this project and thought, naively though they could with ease, navigate the bureaucracy, and at minimum get an Eye Activated computer that voiced words. Eight months later, Mick finally secured the computer.

By that time they both felt so invested in the project that he began researching an idea to create an Eye Writer, which is a computer that through only eye coordination draws and writes. The Eye Writer was mounted, initially in eye glasses, and developed by a group of Open Source computer developers.  It was built in The Ebeling's home in Venice Beach, California. Once they discovered it had real potential to succeed they brought in Dell Computers.

Eventually they went back to the Open Source team and they built a lightweight EYE Writer that though eye movement only, would project the images on the computer screen mounted above the hospital bed where the immobilized, once vibrant, street artist was finally able to draw again.

Angst, Tempt's devoted and dedicated friend, has maintained his weekly visits. He is an honorable man.  

Tempt, now an internationally celebrated artist, having had several gallery shows throughout the world, symbolizes a spirit of triumph against insurmountable odds. There are no medical miracles and still to hear Tempt tell the story of whom he has become no one could have imagine.

Getting Up: The Tempt One Story tells an amazing human story and triumphant ending! Tony Quan embodies courage and his family and friends, devotion! Getting Up: The Tempt One Story should not be missed.

For more information on Getting Up: The Tempt One Story


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