ECA Art News Briefs

Artists & Makers Studios Chosen to Breathe New Life into Wilkins Avenue Art Center

Just before its second anniversary, Artists & Makers Studios founder and Executive Director Judith HeartSong is expanding operations into the art center at 12276 & 12280 Wilkins Avenue in Rockville. Artists & Makers Studios will assume management and operations on November 1, 2016.

Following the departure of Washington Artworks, the landlord of 12276 & 12280 Wilkins Avenue pursued a number of options in an effort to maintain the facility as a creative space for artists, and approached HeartSong. After a thorough review, the landlord decided that Judith HeartSong’s operation offers the best combination of programs and services to support the artist community currently in residence at Wilkins Avenue, and additional artists to come.

Artists & Makers Studios 2 at 12276 & 12280 Wilkins Avenue will open with the goal of building on a sense of community and synergy among artists in a supportive and collaborative environment.  A&M2 features a more industrial arts atmosphere in a light industrial neighborhood in Twinbrook that allows a wider variety of processes including kilns, spot welding, large format sculpture and open space for 3D artists.  The expansion increases Artists & Makers Studios portfolio to approximately 36,000 Square Feet of artist space.

In 2013, HeartSong transitioned from Founding Board Member to Executive Director of Capitol Arts Network, and opened CAN’s first facility which housed more than 40 artist studios, 65 resident artists, a classroom and a gallery which hosted high quality exhibits and events.  CAN Studios opened with 95% of studios occupied, well above the 65% requested by its board.

In 2015, HeartSong opened Artists & Makers Studios, the region’s first commercial art center.  Located 11810 Parklawn Drive in Rockville’s White Flint business district, the 13,000 Square Foot facility consists of 43 studios, 3 classroom/workshop spaces, 5 galleries, and is home to 70 resident artists.  With the opening of Artists & Makers Studios 2, HeartSong continues to build on a stellar record of turning concepts into reality, and generating spaces and opportunities for Mid-Atlantic artists, makers and arts professionals. A&M and A&M2 offer a sense of community, bolster artists’ knowledge, and encourage them to grow their businesses and careers.

Artists & Makers Studios was developed with a clear and ever-present vision which is the foundation of its success: A dedication to providing a supportive and vibrant environment for artists to realize their creative goals – through studio practice, collaboration, education, opportunities, networking and connecting with the community beyond our doors.