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  Birmingham Bloomfield Art Center
The Birmingham Bloomfield Art Center serves southeast Michigan’s visual arts community by fulfilling its mission, “to enhance the quality of life in our region by promoting the appreciation, understanding and practice of the arts.”
CLASSES: Among the services offered by the BBAC to the community is an annual curriculum of approximately 500 high-quality classes, workshops, camps, and other educational offerings. More than 4,000 registrants, ranging in age from 3 to 83+, from more than 100 regional communities, benefit from outstanding opportunities to learn about a broad and deep range of visual expression including drawing, painting (oil, acrylic, mixed, watercolor, encaustic), sculpture, printmaking, jewelry/metalsmithing, ceramics, and fiber (including one of the last handweaving programs in this part of the state). The BBAC’s arts education program with its large number, variety, frequency, consistency, and quality of offerings, was established during the BBAC’s 51-year history and continues to draw new and returning students and faculty to its studios for truly high quality visual arts. FACULTY: Our faculty of 75-100 respected artists shares their expertise and inspire students to achieve their greatest artistic potential. BBAC faculty include many who teach (taught) in accredited art programs including the College for Creative Studies, Wayne State University, University of Michigan, Eastern Michigan University, and Oakland University. The classes they teach at these institutions are similar or even identical to those they teach at the BBAC. This association through faculty members to accredited programs with their own rigorous standards speaks to the BBAC’s visual arts education quality. Among many notable artists teaching at the BBAC are Charles McGee, Robert Wilbert, Gail mally-mack, Loretta Oliver, Leslie Masters, Zdzislaw Sikora and Roumen Boudev. Emerging artists teaching at the BBAC include Clinton Snider, Melissa Vaughn, Laura Whitesides Host and Vianna Szabo. A prerequisite for BBAC faculty members is teaching experience. Not only must s/he be a high quality artist but have demonstrable experience teaching the artform. Our outstanding faculty members provide high quality, hands-on educational experiences in an environment of nine professional studios, surrounded by exhibition spaces where visual displays reinforce teaching methods and process. The BBAC’s education staff works closely with faculty members through an active Curriculum Committee to ensure that a quality program is in place, with policies and proposals frequently reviewed for smooth communication in our active organization. Our faculty is our greatest asset in providing high quality visual arts programming through outstanding instruction, exhibition and institutional support. DIVERSITY: The BBAC’s population is a diverse mix of ages, nationalities, religions, and countries of origin from more than 100 communities in our region. We support the international community with several visual arts offerings to students in their native language. We have offered painting classes in German and ceramics classes in Japanese to make learning the art-form more accessible. Most students in these classes are here because of spousal short or long-term work assignments. High-quality, specialized visual arts classes such as the BBAC’s are important and very appropriate in our region. DaimlerChrysler cited the BBAC for serving “ex-pats” in their workforce and helping make our region an outstanding place to live and work. The BBAC has worked in many ways over the years to serve Detroit residents and artists with our programming. A program launched by the BBAC in 2006 called “Chase Your Dream,” reaches out to serious art students from Detroit to help them prepare for higher education in the visual arts by studio art opportunities to strengthen, build and complete their portfolios; working with mentors and the program coordinator for guidance and information, both artistic and academic; and assistance with documentation: digital images for students to use in their application/portfolios. The program is funded by Chase Bank and is free of charge to program participants which number 21 in the 2007-08 school year. The program has enrolled 34 students in its 2-year history, coming from 6 Detroit High Schools. We are seeing from college acceptances that this program is making a difference and changing lives and that is both exciting and inspiring. Building on this program is part of our plan as an essential component of meeting our mission in providing high quality, relevant services to the community and the region, and specifically Detroit. CAMPUS: Our campus looks over the Lincoln Hills Public Golf Course and today includes a 25,000 square foot facility. The BBAC relocated, in 1962, to its current location which was once an abandoned water treatment plant. Two expansion construction phases in the 1990s (at a cost of .5 million) created a fully equipped campus of nine studios, four exhibition galleries, and supporting administrative and maintenance areas. Our facility is an essential physical resource for providing exceptional visual arts programs at an ambitious scale. The BBAC’s nine studio areas include dedicated space for handweaving, jewelry, metals, printmaking, and one studio used primarily for sculpture. The entire lower level of the building is devoted to our ceramics program. Three studios are multi-purpose, used primarily for painting classes, with two sharing a temporary wall opened for exceptionally large classes, workshops, jurying or other activities. The visual arts studios allow for an outstanding weekly curriculum of offerings: generally, Monday through Thursday, 9:00-Noon; 12:30-3:30; 4:00-6:00; and 7:00-10:00. Friday and Saturday classes end at 3:30 (the BBAC closes at 5:00 on those days, except for exhibition openings). Though currently closed on Sunday, beginning fall 2008 a three-hour block of programming will be offered on Sunday at the BBAC. EXHIBITIONS: 25 to 30 shows are exhibited each year in four primary galleries, all free and open to the public. Exhibits are another part of our year-round visual arts programming and an important means of supporting both established and emerging regional artists. The artistic direction of the exhibitions is overseen by two volunteer committees, with support from BBAC staff. The committees represent a broad range of visual artists, curators, art educators, and administrators, all keenly interested in quality exhibitions for the community and for artists’ professional opportunity. Each of the two committees has artistic control, with input from BBAC staff. Each of the BBAC’s gallery spaces is strategically conceived to offer artists and viewers the opportunity to see the highest quality of work within distinct exhibition categories. All shows support the “appreciation and understanding” portion of our mission and are also intended to collectively display an entire range of expression and level of artistic development. The Commons Gallery was created to exhibit work by BBAC students, as part of the educational curriculum. With the leadership of the instructor, students work to execute all aspects of their exhibition. Each year, there is also a BBAC juried adult-student show and a separate youth-student show. Highest quality work, within the context of student artistic development, is displayed for the benefit of all who view work in the Commons Gallery. The DeSalle Community Gallery hosts local, regional and outstate group exhibitions, and is in constant demand from many organizations seeking to display work in professional, quality exhibition spaces. These juried shows are conducted and supported by the organizations that launch them. Some shows include work by novice artists while others include outstanding, award-winning artists. Community groups also include schools: each year the DeSalle Gallery schedule includes an exhibition of work by Birmingham High Schools’ art departments as well as a Regional High School Competition. The BBAC’s Exhibition Committee reviews and oversees the De Salle Gallery schedule, providing a broad range of input on the type and quality of community exhibitions. The Robinson Gallery showcases the strongest examples of contemporary local, regional and national professional artists. Several years ago the Robinson Committee incorporated into the schedule, shows by artists with lifelong contributions to the visual arts in our region. This decision was made in order to present work that would likely not be seen again, though it retains its artistic value and is completely fresh for most audiences. These Michigan Masters have included Peter Gilleran, Georg Vihos, Frank Cassara, John Glick, Ray Katz and Albert Young. Later in 2008, Ruth Adler Schnee and Marie Woo will exhibit as Michigan Masters in the Robinson Gallery which is frequently a destination for both BBAC visitors and BBAC faculty who utilize the work to discuss artistic and technical considerations with their students. In 2006, the BBAC’s Exhibition Committee dedicated a hallway as the Ramp Gallery, a space exhibiting work of emerging artists. Requests have grown from individuals and groups wanting to exhibit smaller work in this intimate space. By identifying, promoting and calling for entries in the Ramp Gallery, the BBAC now has the ability to encourage new and emerging individual artists. MICHIGAN FINE ARTS COMPETITION: Only one annual exhibition occupies all three galleries: the Michigan Fine Arts Competition, a statewide juried competition hosted for the past 27 years by the BBAC, after inheriting the show from the Detroit Institute of Arts. This is the BBAC’s largest show and attracts over 400 guests opening night where ,000 in prize $ is awarded to artists. GALLERY SHOP: An outstanding compliment to the BBAC’s exhibition program is our Gallery Shop which consists of year-round opportunities for original art sales. Since its 2004 renovation, the Gallery Shop has been a dynamic destination for sale of original work. In 2007, retail sales through the Gallery Shop and the annual Holiday Shop of original art totaled more than 0,000. We see this as a continuation of our mission to support working artists by providing space, display, promotion and sales of hand made objects such as jewelry, ceramics, glass, wearable art, sculpture, and painting. EVENTS: The BBAC’s sunlit and art-filled spaces make it a natural fit for both large and small events. The Art Center itself hosts approximately 10 exhibition openings each year with anywhere from 125 to 400+ guests attending each opening. Our openings are free and open to the public, include food & drink, artists, art-lovers, people young and old, and from every walk of life. Event Rentals are also available to Art Center members. They can include private parties, corporate receptions, meetings, etc. Please give us a call if you’d like more information. The Art Center also hosts 3 ticketed fundraisers each year. These events center around the arts and raise a significant portion of the revenue needed to provide such high quality programming to those in our region each year: Shop & Champagne – join us for our December preview party for the Holiday Shop with champagne, gourmet food from favorite regional restaurants & caterers, complimentary gift wrapping and 10% off on all purchases. National City Birmingham Fine Art Festival – this Mother’s Day Weekend art festival has been produced by the BBAC in downtown Birmingham for 28 years. With over 200 artists from across the country, this festival draws up to 80,000 visitors and ranks among the top 100 of thousands nationwide each year. artBLAST – bring your friends and family to this Independence Day event that includes art workshops, live music, outdoor barbeque supper, and front row seats to the Birmingham Fire Works come nightfall. COMMUNITY PARTNERSHIPS: The BBAC works with a very large number of community groups, to contribute to and represent the rich array of arts in our region. The BBAC has been actively engaged in the reorganization of what is now the Cultural Alliance of Southeast Michigan, in its planning and committee work. We are one of the destinations in the Cultural Alliance’s Macy’s Museum Adventure Pass, with pass distribution at more than 165 regional libraries. This has been a wonderful means of connecting these libraries’ patrons to cultural resources including the BBAC and 24 other cultural destinations. We have strong, ongoing community relationships with many organizations including the Birmingham Public Schools and many other school districts; the City of Birmingham; Bloomfield Township Public Library; ArtDetroitNow; Leadership Oakland; ArtServe Michigan; Haven; Hospice; Cranbrook Educational Community; College for Creative Studies—and many others. We also serve artistic organizations in our region with support services including space for meeting and exhibition; promotion; scholarship and award administration; and other functions that help them serve their members and audiences and fulfill their missions.
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Sculptures Yes
Paintings Yes
Jewelery Yes
Shows Yes
Photo Gallery photo_gallery
Wheel Chair Access Yes
Contact Details :
Contact_name Birmingham Bloomfield Art Center State Michigan
Company_name Birmingham Bloomfield Art Center Sountry
Email PaulYoung@BBArtCenter.org URL http://www.bbartcenter.org/
Address 1516 S. Cranbrook Phone1 248.644.0866
City Birmingham Phone2
Zip 48009 Fax

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