WILLIAMSTOWN -- Stockbridge-based IS183 Art Institute has expanded to offer classes, workshops and summer camps in Northern Berkshire.
The 22-year-old organization will offer a variety of programs for children, adolescents and adults this spring and summer at the Little Red Schoolhouse. Anyone interested in classes at IS183 are invited to a free open house at the Little Red Schoolhouse at 32 New Ashford Road, Williamstown, on Sunday from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m.
"In the last seven and a half years, since I've been here, we've been slowly moving from the confines of our four walls to meet our organization's mission," Executive Director Hope Sullivan said.
The nonprofit art school, housed in Citizen's Hall in Stockbridge, has already expanded to hold classes in schools across the county, Sullivan explained, but conversations on how to better serve adults have been ongoing.
The conversation on bringing programming to Northern Berkshire picked up in the fall, when Sullivan reached out to local artist Cecila Hirsch. Around the same time, the Little Red Schoolhouse, now run by the South Williamstown Community Association, closed due to low enrollment. The organization saw the schoolhouse as the perfect space to continue programming in North County, Sullivan said.
The classes in Williamstown still uphold the organization's mission to retain small class sizes, Sullivan said.
"The general standard is between 12 and 16, to make sure students benefits of personal attention," she said.
An exception is an Appalachian Folk Singing class, she added, which meets August 16 and 17.
"For that, we can have dozens. The more the better," she said.
Other classes and workshops will allow students to experiment with calligraphy, collage, jewelry making, and non-fiction writing. In addition, a "crash-course" on using a digital SLR camera will be offered.
An exciting addition to the region will be summer camps for children and adolescents, Sullivan said.
"The camps are a really rich, creative experience," she said, adding that students get the chance to process the art as well as create art.
Every camp will be facilitated by a professional artist working to convey a theme personally inspiring to them, along with a teaching assistant, Sullivan said.
One camp for children ages 5 to 7 is Creature Palooza, Sullivan said, which runs from Aug. 5 to 9. Children will use paper mache, clay, paint and other mediums to create imaginary creatures.
Older children can attend a two-week Children's Theater Company camp, where they can create a theater production based on Rudyard Kipling's "Just So" stories. Time will be split between theater activities and scene, prop and costume design.
For more information about IS183 offerings in Northern and Southern Berkshire County, and to see the season's course offerings, visit www.is183.org, or call 413-298-5252.
To reach Edward Damon, email