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Provincetown :: Thursday, July 31st 2014

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Notes from Lands End: Unleash your Creative Urges

Art Classes in Provincetown and Truro


May 27th, 2014

Provincetown is rich in the diversity of its cultural offerings. A couple can come on vacation. One goes to the beach and shops (truly worthy pastimes). The other fulfills a life-long dream to take pottery at Castle Hill or printmaking at PAAM. Maybe the goal is an en plein air painting class at the Cape School of Art or a poetry workshop at the Fine Arts Work Center. Each of the four schools of the visual and literary arts at Lands End is quite unique. Let’s look around:

If you are considering taking summer classes in the arts, there are no finer places than Provincetown and Truro to unleash your creative urges.

1. Cape School of Art: Since 1898, Charles Hawthorne’s Provincetown legacy has continued through the Cape [Cod] School of Art. Former instructors, like the lengendary Henry Henshe and contemporary Lois Griffel, carried the torch of this visual school for decades. Current classes are taught by gifted working painters who embody this style, with its profound relationship to color and light. Students learn in an en plein air setting. They select a vista view, a model on the beach or a house on a quiet street. It is delightful to go around town and see students at their easel, often with paint in their hair or smeared across their forehead, deep in concentration.

The reclamation of Hawthorne’s famous barn, with its Twenty Summers Program, includes Cape School of Art classes in portraiture as well as author events. Learn more at www.capeschoolofart.com and www.20summers.org.

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2. Castle Hill: Truro Center for the Arts:

Deep in the woods of Truro near the Pamet River is a magical place with a reclaimed windmill as offices, four kilns, an organic garden and one big barn. Castle Hill: Truro Center for the Arts began in 1971 through the efforts of their recently departed founder Joyce Johnson. With an outstanding year-round ceramics studio, poetry workshops, events on art criticism, painting courses, book-making and culinary arts instruction, this idyllic setting is the heartbeat of Truro’s (and way beyond) artistic life. The student body, many whole families, includes people of all ages, some with no prior experience to esteemed professionals. A love for creativity itself, as it applies to clay or paint or a blank page, is the essence of Castle Hill. Read about their course listings at www.castlehill.org.

3. Fine Arts Work Center: Founded in 1968 by a group of artists who wanted a place to create without distraction, the Fine Arts Work Center is internationally renowned today. Many summer instructors are former fellows who have experienced this electric and intensely productive environment as students themselves. Weekly workshops in prose, poetry, studio art, printmaking and photography give participants the opportunity to learn with like-minded others. The evening readings and weekly open studios bring current and future Pulitzer Prize winning writers to FAWC, a true gift to the Provincetown community. For those who can’t get here this summer, there are online courses available. Want to know more? Go to www.fawc.org.

4. Provincetown Art Association and Museum: An award winning school associated with a museum allows students to discover their own visual language surrounded by the work of master artists in a gorgeous setting. In the spirit of the 2014 Provincetown Art Association and Museum Centennial celebration, The Lilian Orlowsky and William Freed School at PAAM has new courses for children, teens and adults in drawing, mixed media, painting, plein air painting, printmaking, digital and pinhole photography as well as art history and collector aesthetics. Teachers have profound ties to the community and are a vital part of the cultural gravitas at Lands End. Check out their offerings at www.paam.org.


If you are considering taking summer classes in the Arts, there are no finer places than Provincetown or Truro to unleash your creative urges.

All Photos courtesy of their school: Summer Workshops at FAWC, Youth Arts Curating Program at PAAM, Raku Firing at Castle Hill, John Clayton with Cape School of Art & PAAM.

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Author and self-publishing pioneer Laura Shabott lives in and writes about Provincetown. She is a graduate of the School of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston (1992) and recently published a 2014 update of her authorship guide, Confessions of an eBook Virgin: What Everyone Should Know before They Publish on the Internet. A 2013 National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) winner, Shabott is working on FISH: a Novel. The author shares a home and a garden with her partner Jacques Macara, a retired commercial fisherman and a native son.






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