Viewing Artists in Their Natural Habitats
The Mountain Maryland Artist Studio Tours program is an initiative of the Allegany Arts Council located in Cumberland, Maryland. The program takes visitors away from the usual gallery experience to visit artists in their studio environments, where they see artists in their natural habitats.
Held annually, the Artist Studio Tours include member artists of the Allegany Arts Council living and working in Allegany and Garrett Counties. In 2019, 12 studios and 22 artists were represented, with media ranging from jewelry, to ceramics, wood-turning, and furniture design. In 2020, the Tours program was cancelled due to the impacts of COVID-19 and the inability to safely gather.
Mark your calendars for the next installment of the AST program to take place Saturday and Sunday, October 9-10, 2021. Tour books will be available at places where the arts are supposed and here at the Allegany Arts Council.
Why Do We Want Artists Living and Working in our Community?
It is true that having a steady crop of artists creating in your community makes it more vibrant, increasing the quality of life, and often, the aesthetics, too, but local artists bring so much more to the table...their vision and unique perspective provides important political, social and cultural insight.
Artists see through a different lens, and that can sometimes creates cataclysmic shifts in how we see our world.
I don't know if Artist Studio Tours are right for me - why should I attend?
Artists are constantly creating, so whether you know an artist personally, or have recently seen work of local artists, there is always something new to see.
Plus, artists become alive in their own creative spaces, offering a much different perspective from a gallery exhibit where their work is installed and displayed. Artists that participate in the AST program talk with visitors and demonstrate their techniques.
Each studio offers something different - from indoor studios to outdoor campfires, each stop along the way is as unique as the artist himself. Plus, what a better way to spend a weekend than driving around the community to see inspiring places?
A Word about Supporting Local Artists
We often hear people say they don't participate in programs like this because they can't afford a personal collection and that's ok! There is more to supporting our local arts community than just buying - take a moment and learn a few ways you can offer support, encourage artists to live and work right here in Allegany County.