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Looking back at 2013, and ahead to 2014

December 31, 2013

Santa Grown Up and MeWe’ve made some great strides here at the Community Arts Center in 2013. We’re always trying to better reach new and existing audiences with the goals of nurturing the arts, fostering creativity and promoting education to the people of Kentucky. Throughout the year, 11,972 people participated in an exhibit, class or event, and 183 artists either exhibited or taught a class at the Arts Center. When you factor in facility rentals for private events, those numbers are even higher!

2013 also brought 49 public
and private Starry Night Studio painting classes, 13 Lunch with the Arts programs including a visit by Kentucky Poet Laureate and Danville native Frank X Walker, and the new Munchkin & Me class for toddlers and grown-ups. It’s difficult to choose a defining moment of 2013 for the Arts Center, but a few events stand out as particularly exciting and foreshadowing growing programs and exhibits to look for in 2014.

We also welcomed new artist in residence Mark Wilhelm, painted two murals downtown and held popular classes and workshops in woodburning, improvisation, dulcimer, abstract art, Shakespeare, handmade felt and photography… just to name a few!

This year began with a new exhibit, “New Year New Art.” The Arts Center hosted this exhibit of fresh works by local artists as a way to start the year with inspiration to create original works to showcase in their community. The opening reception included a speech by Mayor Steven Connelly of Berea, explaining the impact of the arts on the economy. This exhibit will return in 2014, opening on Jan. 2 with another free reception on Jan. 9, including guest speaker Dr. Michael Karpf, Executive V.P. for Health Affairs at UK HealthCare, who will expand on the topic of how the arts drive economic development.

Wild WestEach year in February and March, the Arts Center’s blockbuster exhibit explores a non-arts theme in creative, interactive and educational ways. “Wild West,” sponsored by Danville Pediatrics, brought a traveling exhibit from the Buffalo Soldier National Museum, performances by serenading cowboys Cool Waters, hands-on panning for gold, and other interactive activities.

Student and teacher visitors fulfilled specific core content education standards for Kentucky schools by learning about Native American, Spanish and pioneer culture. At 2014’s blockbuster, expect to rethink recycling at “Re” by using imagination and creativity to repurpose found materials into new and beautiful art.

The Arts Center’s outreach program, Arts Cart, made more than 50 visits in 2013 to community partners like Pioneer Vocational Industrial Services, and McDowell Place. Arts Cart makes arts activities, such as painting, drawing and music-making, accessible to members of the community who otherwise might not have an opportunity to experience them. This program fosters creativity, develops artistic skills, promotes self-expression and improves self-image for children, senior citizens, low-income groups and those with mental or physical disabilities.

The Gift flowersWe painted two murals downtown on the Gilcher Building windows – one during the Great American Brass Band Festival in the summer and another, dedicated to the season of giving, in the late fall and winter. The goals of these public art projects include providing access to the arts for locals and tourists, enhancing public spaces, and building Danville’s identity as an arts-friendly community and one of Kentucky’s first Cultural Districts. The Arts Center has scouted additional locations and applied to the National Endowment for the Arts for funding to expand public art throughout downtown Danville in 2014 and 2015.

The Arts Center welcomed two new drama instructors in 2013: first Craig Payst in the summer, then Julya Mirro in the fall. Payst’s focus has been teaching Shakespeare Acting Workshops, but has also hosted theater reading groups and mask building workshops. Mirro started by holding two separate but equally popular Intro to Improv classes – one for teens and one for adults. In early 2014, look for more drama classes, including beginning and advanced Shakespeare workshops.

Horizon: Contemporary Landscape is the annual juried exhibit that inspires locally and nationally known artists to blur the lines between traditional and modern landscapes. In 2013, more than 100 pieces – representing diverse mediums of painting, photography, digital art, and collage – were submitted by artists in 14 different states. About 25 pieces were accepted into and eventually exhibited at the show curated by juror Boris Zakic, a contemporary artist and professor of art at Georgetown College. Entries into the 2014 Horizon exhibit will be accepted beginning in the early summer, with information available on the Arts Center’s website.

I can’t wait to show you all what’s in store for 2014! Remember that you can always contact us with questions by phone (859-236-4054) or email. We’re also on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Vine.



New Year New Art
On exhibit Jan. 2 – Jan. 25
Free Reception Thursday, Jan. 9, 6 to 8 p.m. with guest speaker Dr. Michael Karpf presenting
“The Ripple Effect: How the Arts Drive Economic Development”

Munchkin and Me
Mondays, Jan. 6, 13 and 27 at 10 a.m. $21.
It’s never too early to explore your child’s creativity! New crafts and activities each week and each month. Register now.

Ballroom Soiree
Friday, Jan. 10, 8 to 10 p.m.
Free to try for the first time, otherwise $5 per person. Includes a Cha Cha lesson!

Shakespeare Acting Workshop
Wednesdays, Jan. 15 – Feb. 19, 7 – 9 p.m. $45
Learn the tools of analyzing, working with verse, building characters, building scenes and delivering a convincing, compelling performance. No previous acting experience necessary. Ages 16+. Register now.