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Warwick Center For The Arts Unites The Community

By S. Mathur

The mission of the Warwick Center for the Art is to serve as a center dedicated to uniting the community through the arts. We will connect all ages and abilities to a variety of arts activities through exhibits, educational programs and cultural experiences. Emerging and established artists will find a unique and inviting space in which to share their creative vision with the community. The Center is housed in the historic Kentish Artillery Armory building in the Pontiac Mill complex in Warwick, RI.

The Center opened in 1974 as part of the Bicentennial celebrations, with a focus on historical exhibits. Over time, the popular focus shifted in favor of art, and by 1997, it became the Warwick Museum of Art. By 2016, with a changing mission that involved community participation, it was renamed the Warwick Center for the Arts.

True to its mission, the Center is a focus for arts education and programs in the community.

"Our role in the community as for as exhibits and artwork showcased is to be a venue for all ages and abilities whether you are a student just starting out in the arts or a professional artist who has been practicing for years," Center Director Taylor Terreri said. "Our role in the community as a whole it to be a dynamic resource that encompasses all aspects of the arts and provides for the exciting exchange of ideas to create enriching experiences and to contribute to the quality of life within the state of Rhode Island."

The Center exhibits artwork from local, regional and international artists, changing exhibits every month or two. Current exhibits include 'Oakland Beach in the 1960's: Art, Society, and Nature', co-sponsored by local tourism, environmental and historical preservation groups. A visit to the exhibit can be combined with Food Truck Night in Downtown Warwick, which has a variety of delicious eats and live music. Foots Truck Night happens on every third Thursday in the summer.

Summer art camp for kids between the ages of six and 12 introduces them to the fun of cartooning, comic books, painting, and sculpture. With workshops like Draw Your Pokemon, Origami Art, and Printmaking there's plenty to inspire young minds. There's fun and inspiration for adults too, and an upcoming workshop on The Art of the iPhone teaches people how to take pictures with their handy smartphones. They also learn how to edit and process the pictures.

Terreri enjoys her work at the Center because it puts her in the middle of all the happenings.

"I enjoy my job because I get to work in the arts in a variety of capacities; whether it be organizing art exhibits or planning educational programs for kids and adults, their is always something exciting going on and always something new to explore," she said.

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