Local artists are invited to join the Open Studio Fine Arts Group at the Surry Arts Council, held monthly. The first meeting was April 14. The group is a collaborative effort to organize local artists and the community and offer shared studio time and a space for dialogue, which may lead to community outreach activities and further collaborations.
Artists may bring their own materials to work on during the open studio time, for three hours each month.
Lizzie Morrison, director of arts for Surry Arts Council, said the goal was to “give artists the chance to meet other local artists, discover new techniques, get feedback on their art in a supportive environment, and provide a monthly studio space to create new art.”
Morrison said the open studio time provided a relaxed atmosphere and an excellent opportunity for artists to experience “personal growth through creativity” as well as growth in the community.
The group discussed possible community outreach projects at the first meeting, including ideas about hosting workshops and creating murals, but “nothing was set in stone yet,” said Morrison.
No commitment is necessary to join the group — artists can drop in and work during any scheduled open studio time, and may choose to stay for the entire three hours or just a portion of that time.
“I really want this group to develop into whatever the artists want it to be and I hope it bridges any gap between local artists and the community — we wanted to provide a space and a time for the community to connect with local artists, to see how they can get involved. We want to collaborate in any way we can.”
Morrison was encouraged by the excellent response she received after ArtWalk, with positive feedback from artists, visitors and businesses who participated. “It really was encouraging to see the great response. This ongoing group that is connecting to the community is a great thing,” said Morrison.
The first meeting attracted around 10 local artists for a casual session, with some choosing to drop in and out during the three-hour time slot.
Any artists age 15 and older are welcome to attend the free Open Studio Fine Arts Group, held on the lower level of the Surry Arts Council, below the Andy Griffith Museum. The next meeting is May 12 from 2 to 5 p.m. June’s meeting is on the 9th, for the same time frame. Future meetings will be held on July 14, Aug. 11, Sept. 8, Oct. 13, Nov. 10 and Dec. 8.
Artists are requested to sign up for the free group with the Surry Arts Council by calling 786-7998 or emailing Lizzie Morrison at firstname.lastname@example.org.