We have many wonderful things happening within the building here at Waterfall Arts and one of them is the Open Art Room. This program is not one of Waterfall Art’s own programs, but it is one that we are happy to house. The Open Art Room or O.A.R. is led by Julie Rose and is a great addition to our arts community. We have asked Julie to say a few words about the program, which she has done so below.
– Deanne Dutton, Office Manager
The idea for Open Art Room originated with Belfast artist, Julie Rose, who is passionate about creating comfortable spaces in which disparate members of the community can come together. After a serendipitous mention of the idea to her own doctor, Julie met with Seaport Community Health Center’s Mary Beth Leone and eventually Waterfall Arts’ board member Joshua Henry. As the idea began to take shape, Dr. Tim Hughes, also of Seaport, joined us.
The Open Art Room was originally envisioned as a community resource specifically targeted to Seaport Community Health Center’s intensive outpatient addiction treatment program. After we met with participants of the program, we decided to open the space up to the larger community.
The O.A.R. doesn’t offer “art therapy” per se. What it offers is a comfortable, drop-in space for participants to become re-acquainted with the joy of discovery and creativity. For those recovering from addiction, discovering that fun can be had without drugs and alcohol is a revelation. For all adults, getting in touch with one’s playfulness is a wonderful thing. We all can color and draw and make things; we need not be expert or artists with a capital A. We hope that The OAR can become a thriving community room and a model for a space that welcomes, honors, and supports adults of all backgrounds and abilities.
Julie worked as a tattooist here in Maine for fifteen years and is used to working with others around. She’s in the studio most days working on drawings and her own textile and printed work, but from Tuesday through Friday from noon to 4:00 p.m., the studio is open to all. We’ve had generous donors and as such there are no fees to anyone. There’s plenty of paper, pens, pencils, watercolors, acrylics, scrapbooking and light printmaking supplies, and much, much more. The “Daily Doodle” and making mandalas have been a studio favorite. Stop in yourself, say hello, and try your hand at a doodle, or join the virtual community on the Facebook page. Visit the website here.
– Julie Rose, Open Art Room Founder and Facilitator