More than 70 Chamber members and community leaders traveled to Greenville, South Carolina, July 23-25, for the Chamber of Commerce of West Alabama's inaugural benchmarking trip. Click for Chamber of Commerce Article.
This year marks a special year for those of us in Tuscaloosa. A group of business leaders and elected officials, lead by the Chamber of Commerce of West Alabama, visited a comparable community and examined its economic development successes and challenges in hopes of applying its lessons to our region. O'Connor Art Studios was able to participate on this benchmark trip and what a wonderful trip it was!
Needless to say, we saw lots of art, e v e r y w h e r e. Greenville has a wide range of public works of art in their main downtown area.... sculpture in every variety, some small (little bronze mice sculptures for you to find throughout main street) and many much larger than life, including their suspension bridge which is a work of art in itself. Hmmm..... Think art plays a big role in this whole thing? !!!! O'Connor Art Studios hopes to help the public works of art continue to grow in Tuscaloosa and beyond! #yeahTHATgreenville
Comic book artist Elise Strong visits our Teen Drawing Camp this summer. Fantastic presentation, making connections between traditional realism and fantasy.
Over a year ago, Caleb O'Connor had a vision of honoring this amazing athlete. Last month, the vision became real as he began building up the armature and sculpting Deontay Wilder's anatomy in clay at O'Connor Art Studios. The sculpture has progressed incredibly quickly and excitement is in the air! Visit our studio Friday, March 3rd, 5:30-8:30pm for the last public viewing of this incredible clay sculpture before the mold process begins. The next step? Bronze casting of the Bronze Bomber.
On December 2nd, we hosted the First Annual Local Artists Holiday Art Sale in conjunction with the monthly First Friday. We invited a dozen or so artists from the Tuscaloosa area to showcase their work in our studio. Each one who participated had never shown their work at O'Connor before, and one hundred percent of sales went directly back to the artists to support their work.
Many of the pieces will be on display and for sale in the studio until this Friday, December 16th. If you're still looking to find the perfect Christmas gifts for the special people on your list and you'd like to shop local and support artists in our area we invite you to stop by and browse these unique pieces of art! Call us at (205) 396-9892 with questions about what may be available or for hours.
To see more from the participating artists view their individual websites or Facebook pages through the links below.
Maggie Tanski came to O’Connor Art Studios as a young, homeschool student interested in art and looking for an outlet to explore that interest. She began taking private lessons from Ruth on a weekly basis. However, as her schedule grew busier she had to take a break from art. After a time, Maggie’s mom contacted Ruth to see if Maggie could pick her art studies back up, but this time with a group of homeschool friends also looking for a place to receive a serious art education. This is where the O’Connor Art Studios ARTistic Adventures homeschool curriculum was born!
For two years, Maggie was able to study at the studio under Ruth’s guidance. She began in the core classes learning the basics and made her way through higher level courses which prepared her to take the step into college. During her time in the program, Maggie was dedicated in her pursuit of knowledge and her commitment to learning. “There was not one homework assignment I gave, that she did not come back the following week with a carefully studied and executed response. She took advantage of every situation presented to her... a great student, a true learner! Maggie was also kind and considerate to her peers, often offering help and giving support where needed,” said. Ruth.
Maggie also worked as Ruth’s teaching assistant during the two JUST FOR KIDS Summer Art Camp and was efficient in the time and responsibilities given to her. “The kids loved her,” Ruth said. “She would just as easily get down on the floor to build something with them, as supervise a new activity.”
Maggie’s hard work has paid off in a major way. This Fall she began studying at the Georgia Institute of Technology in Atlanta and is pursuing a degree in Industrial Design. She was awarded several notable accolades including the Homer M. Lloyd, Jr., Georgia Tech Club of Birmingham Scholarship, Steven Ehrensperger Memorial Scholarship, and the Mercedes-Benz US International Scholarship.
Congratulations, Maggie, and thank you for letting us be a part of your journey!
Last year, Seth started at O'Connor Art Studios. He worked long, hard hours and showed much determination. Yes, he is a talented young artist, but this young artist also showed an eagerness to learn and a great dedication to move forward... So proud of him!
Watch out Alabama School of Fine Arts, here comes Seth Evans!