By Carrie Hodousek
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — The Fleisher Art Memorial is kicking off the summer with “ARTspiration!”, their block party-like festival outside with live performances, local craft vendors, and some of the city’s best food trucks.
The festival will be held along the 700 block of the Catherine Street campus and Palumbo Park on Saturday, June 14th, from 10-4 pm.
“A woman named Joanna Quigley runs an interactive dance program called ‘Free Dance’, so she’ll be here,” says Dominic Mercier, Fleisher’s Director of Communications. “Our Cambodian dance group, which is one of our free classes we offer on Saturdays, will be doing a performance outside. The Philadelphia School of Rock students will be here. ‘Fibber,’ which is Hillary Rae’s comedy performance, and also the Philadelphia Youth Orchestra and the West Philadelphia Orchestra.”
Roaming throughout the crowd will also be African story-telling by Norma Bell, accordion playing by the local accordion shop Liberty Bellows, a cartoon magician named Koo Koo the Cartoon Magician, and a drum circle will be located outside.
Mercier says it’s a good gateway for people to come experience what Fleisher’s all about, especially through their tuition-free and low-tuition classes offered.
“People will be able to register that day if there’s something that they’re interested in, most likely for our summer or fall terms,” he said. “We cover everything from Intro to Painting, Screen-printing, or if you’re an experienced artist you can come for an open studio just to use to facilities if you don’t need instructions.”
The Fleisher Art Memorial will open the doors for guests to view their student’s artwork inside. Any class from portrait painting, drawing, a gnome exhibition, and much more will be presented on the walls, as well as the viewing of the sanctuary where the Art Memorial’s founder, Sam Fleisher, used to teach art classes.
Mercier says Fleisher’s idea was to make art available to everyone, and he would throw open the doors and invite anyone in to learn how to make art regardless of their background or experience level.
“We’ve been doing that for 117 years, so our mission here is to offer accessible art education. It’s not necessarily about the end result, but about the process and sort of what you can discover about yourself through the process of making art,” says Mercier.
For more information, check out the Fleisher Art Memorial’s website.
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