Celebrating the ESAC Studios

23 Feb · Hannah Lyle · 2 Comments

A Walk Down Memory Lane...

In light of the progress in our Capital Campaign, the staff at ESAC has been in a celebratory mood! And one of the many things we have to celebrate is the 40th anniversary of the construction of our studios. Join us on a walk down memory lane to commemorate the occasion!

The Academy Now...

If you walk in the rear entrance of the Art Center (as described in our last blog post), you will find one of the most exciting areas in the building: our Academy! In these four studios, we host our classes, field trips, small groups, and workshops! Four times a year, we have as many as 20 classes at a time, with up to 175 students coming in per week. We offer a variety of media, from acrylics to drawing to pottery to Asian brush painting – and everything in between! Be sure to check out our Spring schedule for all the details on the classes coming up in April.

Back in the Day...

The studios were completed in December of 1977 in conjunction with a massive construction project renovating the Art Association’s building. The rest of the renovations were completed by March of 1978. When the studios were completed, our Academy was only three years old, but already booming!

Believe it or not, the studios haven’t always been set up the same way! Back in the day, Studio 2 was the clay studio. Now it hosts our kids’ classes, digital/smart phone photography, and art history!

Studio 3 used to be a painting studio. Now it’s our Pinewood Clay Studio! In this room, you can now take pottery with Maria Spies, Zach Sierke, or Karen Clements.

Studio 4 has always been an ideal painting studio. It has large, north-facing windows, which allow the most light. Nowadays, you can take painting with Cat Pope, Jane Sellier, Benita McNider, or Kathleen Bosell.

Studio 5 used to be a multipurpose studio, hosting classes of portrait sculpture, painting, and drawing. Now we use it for all of our classes on tables, including classes with Mary Lou Nicolai, Cleveland Mosher, Kathy Sheppard, Maria Papp, Heather Mitchell, and Fran Neumann!

The Courtyard Gallery used to be an outdoor courtyard, and a breezeway led to the classrooms. We sure are glad our hallways are nice and air conditioned now, especially during our summer classes and camps!

Students Just Want to Have Fun...

One thing definitely hasn’t changed – our students still have just as much fun now as they did then!

Thank You...

We hope you enjoyed this little look back on the ESAC past! It’s because of people like you we even get to have an Academy! Don’t forget to check back for more blog posts and to look into our Spring Schedule so you can come enjoy our studios too. And lastly, be sure to donate to our Capital Campaign to help make our studios even better than ever!


What’s your favorite memory from taking a class at ESAC? Let us know in the comments below!


  • Gaye Lindsey says:

    Great job! What fun to see how things were 40 years ago, and how they have changed. Thanks, Gaye

    • ESAC says:

      Thanks, Gaye! We enjoyed looking through the photographs to make this post as well. We’re thinking of doing something for Outdoor Art Show next!

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