Arts Council of Princeton’s fall open house returns on Sept. 7

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Rebecca Nowalski
Princeton Arts Council Teacher Ray Brown paints portraiture in front of the Paul Robeson Center. (Photo by Rebecca Nowalski)

The Arts Council of Princeton is opening its doors to families and individuals by showcasing art experiences and programming during the organization’s fall open house.

The fall open house will be held on Sept. 7 from 1-3 p.m. The event will allow visitors to experience hands-on art and everything the arts council has to offer, according to officials.

“The open house allows us to open our doors so people who may be new to the council can learn all about what we do,” said Jim Levine, executive director of the council. “We are continuously adding new events, classes and opportunities for artists, so even people who are familiar with the council will find something interesting and fun to learn about.”

The event is set to have art making and collaborative art projects on display, as well as live dance performances.

“We pride ourselves in being an organization that offers our community ample opportunities to get hands-on. Having interactive activities allows us to give people an idea of what it feels like to participate in our programs throughout the year,” Levine said. “There is no better way for people to gauge their interest than to dive right in – the open house gives people the opportunity to do that.”

He said attendees are generally surprised by the range of activities that goes on at the arts council during the fall open house.

“They may be familiar with our gallery, but didn’t know we offer Flamenco and Bollywood dance classes. Perhaps they’ve attended Communiversity, but weren’t aware we throw monthly dance parties,” Levine said. “Attending the open house really puts into perspective the wide-range of programming we offer, and that there’s truly something for everyone.”

The arts council will not only be showcasing the organizations programming, but a new revitalized digital arts center and new textile center, as well.

“Digital and textile arts are already popular media courses and these areas will allow us to expand programming to reach even more people,” the said. “The revitalized digital studio will allow us to offer lessons in digital design as part of our ArtsExchange collaboration with HomeFront,” he explained.

The ArtsExchange partnership with HomeFront is a program that provides weekly, year-round arts instruction to around 75 children, from the ages of 5-18, whose families are currently living in difficult situations, according to arts council officials.

For Levine his favorite part of the open house is welcoming people who have never been to the arts council.

“We work hard to offer a very broad array of programming, so it’s always great to match up our programs with the interests of our community members,” he said. “This year, our open house is in conjunction with the opening of a new gallery exhibition, titled ‘Wonder.’  This is a really fun, lively show that I’m sure will generate a very positive response. Our expanded digital and textile offerings will also generate excitement.”

“Wonder” is a collection of art created from paper, wood, scrap metal and recycled items. The exhibit will include works such as kites, figures composed of scrap metal parts, paper mache birds and wooden pull toys.

“This is a good chance to take a peek around, try something new and become a part of the family,” said Melissa Kuscin, program and marketing manager for the Arts Council of Princeton.

 For more information about ACP or the fall open house, visit www.artscouncilofprinceton.org.