Over the past year Tabitha Coleman has been excited to watch youth entering the Community Art Room in New Glasgow as they race to see what the NSCAD artists in residence are working on.
Mike Vienneau instructs students as part of the youth art program offered by the Town of New Glasgow. PHOTO BY TABITHA COLEMAN
Thanks to her idea and a willingness on the part of the Town of New Glasgow, a program has been developed to allow local students to grow their artistic talents under the tutelage of the NSCAD students and other area artists.
Geralyn MacDonald, community development director for the town, said the whole artist in residence program and now this spinoff fit in well with the community economic development plan that the town has established through talking with the public and asking what they wanted.
“This is an opportunity for students to have a place to go that is artistic,” she said. “The atmosphere is there.”
This Friday at 6:30 p.m. the students’ work will be on display at the New Glasgow library’s community art room.
“We really encourage as many people as possible to come out to celebrate and congratulate these local youth artists,” MacDonald said.
Tabitha Coleman has described the program as “a beautiful partnership.”
It started last fall and the students would meet twice a month. Once a month they were taught by a NSCAD resident and every other time they were taught by a Pictou County artist in everything from drawing to cooking.
Local artists were: Lyn-Sue Wice, Mike Vienneau, Evan Curley, Chef Gilles Godin, Corey Ceccolini, Raina MacDonald and Heather MacDonald. NSCAD artists were ME Sparks, Morgan Salter and Brianne Williams.
The students ranged from upper elementary to junior high age which was perfect for sparking an interest, Coleman said.
“That’s an age where youth are trying to figure out who they are and where they want to go, so having this opportunity for them to explore those avenues through art and the varieties is a wonderful process and it’s helping nurture youth into possibly becoming artists in the future.”
What she thinks is a special part of the program is that it brings together youth with similar interests.
“One of the most beautiful things is that you have youth that have come from these different schools and throughout Pictou County that may not have otherwise met one another,” Coleman said. “Now you have these friendships that may continue in the future.”
Kim Dickson, marketing and communication director for the Town of New Glasgow, praised Coleman’s efforts.
“Tabitha has been an amazing volunteer for this,” she said. “It’s so wonderful to see it turn into a reality.”