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23 Reviews
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November 27, 2012
1 person found this review helpful

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November 27, 2012
1 person found this review helpful

An amazing open art studio, OFFCenter Community Arts Project welcomes all comers who want to make art in a welcoming, safe and creative atmosphere! Free art materials, work space and peer mentors as we learn from one another in various art media: drawing and painting, print-making, knitting/crocheting, jewelry and metal creating- a special theme throughout the 11 year history is "recycled" art - an art piece from odds and ends! Now this widespread theme is called "re-purposing", but I feel certain OFFCenter in a small way has led the way for many artists, new and experienced, to create from "just stuff". For myself, I am grateful for the many friendships enjoyed over the years with folks from all parts of our community and all levels of economic position, including homeless and near-homeless. The only boundaries in this hospitable community are those of respect for others. As a volunteer and participant, I know OFFCenter keeps going on a very tight budget with only 3 parttime staff - almost miraculous!

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Would you volunteer for this group again?

Definitely

For the time you spent, how much of an impact did you feel your work or activity had?

Life-changing

Did the organization use your time wisely?

Very Well

Would you recommend this group to a friend?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2012

November 27, 2012

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November 27, 2012

I am fortunate to have OFFCenter in my neighborhood and to be involved in such a a positive endeavor. I was taken to OFFCenter by a friend to explore the open studio space. She thought the studio with its varied materials and people making art would help my creative process. She also pushed/encouraged me to put a piece in one of the OFFCenter shows. I did. It sold. For me, it offered a save place to begin showing my work to others and offered me resources and information helpful to new artists and those looking to sell more of their work. The open studio is a wonderful welcoming space for everyone in the community. It is a truly inclusive community space and that is its magic. Making art together truly builds bridges.

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Will you volunteer or donate to this organization beyond what is required of board members?

Definitely

How much of an impact do you think this organization has?

Life-changing

Will you tell others about this organization?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2012

November 27, 2012

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1 previous review
July 8, 2011

I've been a volunteer for different events at OFFCenter for several years. Particularly one of their biggest and most fun annual events is the We Art The People Folk Fest in Robinson Park in Septembe... more

November 27, 2012

I am lucky enough to be a regular volunteer at different OFFCenter events or in the open studio . There is no other place where I see the mix of people interacting together in one place as I do in OFFCenter. The urge to create and to appreciate creativity draws people to OFFCenter. It is a comfortable place for anyone who goes there that makes you want to return and meet more people or explore some new kind of creative expression. It's also a wonderful place to find beautiful and one of a kind treasures that are affordable, and sometimes you can meet the person who made it too!

More feedback...

Would you volunteer for this group again?

Definitely

For the time you spent, how much of an impact did you feel your work or activity had?

A lot

Did the organization use your time wisely?

Very Well

Would you recommend this group to a friend?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2012

July 8, 2011

I've been a volunteer for different events at OFFCenter for several years. Particularly one of their biggest and most fun annual events is the We Art The People Folk Fest in Robinson Park in September. I volunteer all day, starting with getting people ready for the giant puppet parade. It's great because anyone from the community can come to participate and wear or carry a puppet and people who do have lots of fun. Other people just enjoy watching the parade in the park. During the day I have volunteered in the 'kids' art tent (sometimes old people are kids too) where there are several projects that kids can do and take away during the day long art festival. Some years I have volunteered in the Board tent telling people about all the other great art making, learning and sharing opportunities available at OFFCenter (which is located just across the street from where the festival is) and selling items to benefit OFFCenter. During the festival there are different local music and entertainment acts and about 100 local art vendors all selling their own handmade work. The idea of OFFCenter is to make art very accessible, both from the artist side - so the fee for vendors to participate in this event are a fraction of the cost for most festivals like this one - and also the participant side, so there are things sold for a whole range of prices. I have also volunteered in the food booths and also as general set up for the whole park prior to the festival (which is much more work than one would expect). This is a great annual event in Albuquerque and it's lots of fun to see so many (about 3,000) people come and enjoy it and for lots of them to learn about OFFCenter and then come back to the center at another time. Volunteering at OFFCenter can take some patience because there are so many things happening, but it has helped me to be more tolerant of a little chaos, and the results are worth it.

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

witnessing a place where people really from all different walks of life are in one place with a common interest and feel comfortable because of their shared creative goals (even though they are working on individual projects)

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

find a huge financial contributor for them so they could buy their own building and hire more people to do even more great things at their center

November 17, 2012

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November 17, 2012

I love coming to OFf Center when I can find the time. I usually curl up on a cozy armchair with my embroidery and listen to all the little conversations going on around me or the shuffling of other people's work or the keys of the piano being tinkered by anyone generous enough to share their talent. I've met lovely people here and this community center has served exactly the purpose I hoped it would. It provides a creative and social environment where I can work on my art in the company of others. Working in my home studio can get quite lonely at times. Much of the time I struggle with my mental well-being and having a place to be life OFF Center is very helpful to me. I am also grateful for the wealth of donated supplies and tools that OFF Center provides access to. It really allows for creative freedom and growth.

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How would you describe the help you got from this organization?

A lot

How likely are you to recommend this organization to a friend?

Definitely

How do you feel you were treated by this organization?

Very Well

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2012

November 15, 2012

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November 15, 2012

OFFCenter's 10 year history is inspiring and I am proud to have been there to see it grow all the way. Starting first in a small storefront, it is now housed in a large storefront that includes exhibits of art made by participants which are for sale and an art space for exhibits created by all and any of us who wish to participate. It's a lift of spirit to be there whatever your choice and level of skill.

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Would you volunteer for this group again?

Definitely

For the time you spent, how much of an impact did you feel your work or activity had?

Some

Did the organization use your time wisely?

Quite well

Would you recommend this group to a friend?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2012

November 13, 2012

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November 13, 2012

For the past year or so I have contributed my time and skills toward making the frame shop at the center more user friendly. During that time I have taught the rudiments of matting and frame building to many artists who frequent the center. I have also participated in several workshops, art shows and activities that opened up new possibilities to me as an artist. In all these activities I was supported with wonderful help, encouragement and appreciation from the staff and other clients. The best part of my experience there is that I met and worked alongside many people I would not otherwise have crossed paths with. The fact that the center is open to everyone is a most beautiful thing. It enriches us all. I have dreamed of creating a place like this, and I am grateful to be a part of this symbiosis.

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How does this organization compare with others in the same sector?

Very Well

How much of an impact do you think this organization has?

Life-changing

Will you recommend this organization to others?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2012

November 12, 2012

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November 12, 2012

Before I began to take classes at OffCenter, I had been involved with a few of the art shows, which are non-juried and open to the public. I found the space and the staff to be very inviting and inclusive of artists of all ranges of age, ability, and economic status. Some years later, I began to take the drawing class, and have found a new community of people that I probably would not have met under other circumstances. OffCenter is a place where people mix, talk, and share common experience despite the widely varying circumstances of their personal lives. It is a very supportive atmosphere that encourages creative expression in everyone who drops by.

More feedback...

How would you describe the help you got from this organization?

A lot

How likely are you to recommend this organization to a friend?

Definitely

How do you feel you were treated by this organization?

Very Well

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2012

November 11, 2012

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November 11, 2012

I love going to OffCenter to particpate in art-making in a safe and free space! I can just drop by randomly and utilize any of their great supplies and tools. The printmaking program has been really a great way to express myself and learn new techniques from caring professionals. I have taken many classes there and have participated in jewelry -making open studio, which is nice to do in a group.

More feedback...

How would you describe the help you got from this organization?

A lot

How likely are you to recommend this organization to a friend?

Definitely

How do you feel you were treated by this organization?

Very Well

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2012

November 11, 2012

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November 11, 2012

My art group, Rainbow Artists, meets at OFFCenter, and supports the center. They provide art materials, support and encouragement to both the community at large, and an under-served population of artists. The staff is knowledgeable and available for assistance and they are ready and able to provide meeting space, classroom space and materials. They have an amazing art fair each September, We Art the People, that is a much anticipated annual event.

More feedback...

How would you describe the help you got from this organization?

A lot

How likely are you to recommend this organization to a friend?

Definitely

How do you feel you were treated by this organization?

Very Well

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2012

November 11, 2012

more

November 11, 2012

I recently presented a paper for the International Symposium of Electronic Arts (ISEA) at the OFFCenter. It was a great venue and the least boring presentation room I have ever been to. It was a wonderful setting to talk about Art and Science education surrounded by all kinds of art explorations in different colors and materials, from crayons to yarn to computers. Sine we arrived early to setup, we also had a tour and were told of the history and the role in the community that the space has.

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Will you volunteer or donate to this organization?

Likely

How much of an impact do you think this organization has?

Life-changing

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2012

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