Studio Arts Program

The Alcott Center's Arts Program was born from a need for its clients - people suffering from severe mental illness - to be able to express themselves in an alternative manner. Although not considered as traditional "therapy," expressing oneself artistically can be truly therapeutic in the larger sense of the word.

alcott studio arts"I came to art in the mental health system," says accomplished artist and client advocate, Tristan Scremin. "The freedom of expressing oneself without words is a great form of therapy. Art has a way of calming the mind and soothing the soul."

Offered at no charge, the original arts program began over twenty years ago and has remained consistent with Alcott's goals to create a safe environment that promotes individual growth, recovery, independence, and a personal empowerment by addressing the needs of the whole person.

Lead by a professional artist instructor , workshops are conducted in a variety of media, including oil, acrylic, watercolor, block printing and decoupage. The program clearly demonstrates there is no disability in art. The power of creative arts fosters strengths and talents in Alcott Center clients who often feel hopeless and outside of society. It gives them a powerful sense of ability and accomplishment from within themselves. The program also builds a community of artists.

Several client artists involved with the program have had their accomplished work featured at numerous Alcott artworks exhibitions.

In the fall of 2013, the first ever on-site art exhibition, titled "Uncharted" was organized by Alcott clients. The Opening Reception, which was held on October 26, 2012, was a phenomenal success with several works sold during the evening. All artwork proceeds benefitted the Alcott Center and its clients who received the bulk of the sales. On display were the works of over twenty client artists – some self-taught, others with professional art training. Painting, drawing, photography, watercolor and quilts were represented in this first-ever showcase. In preparation, the artists attended a workshop on the mechanics and process for organizing an art exhibit. They also spread the "call to artists" to others they thought might want to participate.

Artist Tristan Scremin notes: "We wanted to highlight another dimension of mental illness. To help dispel the public's preconceived notions and support the efforts of the artists who overcome debilitating issues."

"We need additional financial support to expand the art programs' workshops and exhibitions," says Penny Mehra, Executive Director. "It is our vision to build and expand this program over time with a dedicated studio and gallery space. Help us to celebrate the artistic talents and endeavors of Alcott clients created through the Creative Arts Program!" she adds.

To get information on prices and purchasing artwork, please email .

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