To grapple with the difficulties presented by COVID-19, Lubeznik Center for the Arts in Michigan City has developed a new safety protocol and embraced various technological mediums to keep their fall education programs and classes running. Lubeznik is dedicated to fostering creativity in the community and is happy to be able to offer both in-person and online classes in the midst of the pandemic.
“Obviously, this fall looks different,” said Education Director Hannah Hammond-Hagman. “For our in-house classes and workshops, we are offering a combination of online and in-person classes for all ages. We are prioritizing the safety of our visitors, students, and staff through new protocols and procedures. Masks are required at all times, and we have greatly limited our class capacities to six students per class to maintain proper social distancing.”
Lubeznik is currently hosting a drawing class, mixed media class, and abstract painting class as well as a kids class for young artists in-person. Online, they are offering an adult writing workshop, and drawing classes for children, including a pet portrait class.
While these classes started in September and are now closed to the public, there are still opportunities to get plugged in at Lubeznik this fall. Lubeznik offers maker workshops online and has two workshops coming up this month and next that are still open for registration.
“We started hosting one-hour Zoom workshops called maker workshops, which are single-project workshops that use circuits and electricity in artmaking,” Hammond-Hagman said. “We had a paper circuit workshop this past Saturday. The one coming up on October 17 involves creating a wearable circuit. They’ll make a felt bracelet that has a circuit, which is great for Halloween because you have an LED light and conductive thread that you use to make a bracelet that lights up. The Jitterbug Workshop involves a cute origami bug that dances using technology. That’ll be on November 7.”
On Saturday, October 10, families were able to attend a virtual family day free of charge.
“We have a free family day where kids can come in with our favorite grown-ups into the galleries, meet with us and talk about the works, and pop down into our education spaces, and make usually about three art projects that are based on the exhibit,” Hammond-Hagan said. “It’s really an open house. It was our first virtual family day program, held on Facebook Live. There was a little gallery tour and then live step-by-step instructions for three projects.”
Materials for all in-person and online classes are included in a kit that is included in the cost of the class. These kits are available for pickup at Lubeznik during their regular office hours. For those who would prefer a curbside pickup due to COVID-19 concerns, Hammond-Hagman stated they need only call the office to arrange that.
Hammond-Hagman is proud of how the Lubeznik staff has adapted to both in-person and online environments since the start of the pandemic.
“We’ve adapted tremendously well. Our teaching artist team is phenomenal,” she said. “When the pandemic hit and we knew we’d have to pivot everything we’re doing, we didn’t hesitate. I had already started putting together a pretty intensive technology integration into our programs. It was something we were looking to improve and use better. We had some of that tech in place to pivot where we needed to.”
To learn more about the fall opportunities coming up at Lubeznick visit their website at http://www.lubeznikcenter.org/ and follow their Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/LubeznikCenterfortheArts/.