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Margaret L.

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6 reviews

Review for Offcenter Community Arts Project, Albuquerque, NM, USA

Rating: 5 stars  

Since 2008 I have experienced OFFCenter Community Arts Project as a participant, volunteer, and Board member. Throughout the years I have seen the impact of OFFCenter on the people who come to the art studio to access creative self-expression in community. OFFCenter thoroughly fulfills its mission to 'Enhance the lives of all people in our community - especially those who have been marginalized - through art-making and creative social interaction in a safe environment'. OFFCenter is a rare treasure of high value.

Role:  General Member of the Public
 

Review for Offcenter Community Arts Project, Albuquerque, NM, USA

Rating: 5 stars  

Fall in Albuquerque means that OFFCenter Community Arts Project is about to gift our city once again, as they have done since 2001, with their day long fantastic OFFCenter Folk Art Fest (originally known as the We Art the People Folk Fest) at Robinson Park! One of the best festivals in Albuquerque with something for everyone! The giant puppet parade is a favorite tradition for all to see and anyone who desires to participate can join right in. Up to 100 local artists have the opportunity to exhibit and sell their creations at a very affordable participation cost and the public gets to see so much of Albuquerque's creativity in bloom and purchase unique and wonderful art creations for themselves or as gifts. The kids art making tent buzzes with activity all day long while local musicians, entertainers and food trucks enliven the festival even more! As if all that were not enough, many kitchen creatives contribute delicious baked goods available for purchase, with all proceeds benefiting this wonderful organization. How lucky Albuquerque is to have OFFCenter Community Arts Project - This is just one of the terrific things they bring to our city!

Role:  Volunteer
 

Review for Offcenter Community Arts Project, Albuquerque, NM, USA

Rating: 5 stars  

OFFCenter Community Arts Project in Albuquerque NM is a wonderful community art center open to all in our city FREE of charge. As a long time volunteer I have had the pleasure to observe many people discover their talents and make new friends at OFFCenter. Beautiful art in many forms (painting, drawing, collage, found object creations, fiber arts, playwriting, music) is made by all the different people who come to the OFFCenter studio. I have been very inspired seeing people become more fully themselves and find their own voices through creative self expression. OFFCenter is a valuable treasure in our challenging world, a rare place where connection and acceptance are encouraged and fostered. It's also a great place to 'buy local' and directly support artists who have their work for sale in the retail gift shop! OFFCenter has been offering their open studio (along with outreach programming also) to Albuquerque for over 15 years - and in large part that is thanks to donor contributions of money, time, and supplies. Watch the video to see what happens at OFFCenter, and then please Help Keep OFFCenter Going Strong!

Role:  Volunteer
 

Review for Offcenter Community Arts Project, Albuquerque, NM, USA

Rating: 5 stars  

As a volunteer for OFFCenter during 8 years (as an event volunteer, Board member, interim Exec. Dir, floor sweeper and toilet cleaner) I appreciate OFFCenter as a valuable place where every person is welcomed and encouraged to participate creatively to the fullness of their ability, free of charge and without prejudice. I also love finding great treasures for gifts in the retail shop and knowing 80% of the purchase price directly supports the artist.

Role:  Board Member
 

Review for Offcenter Community Arts Project, Albuquerque, NM, USA

Rating: 5 stars  

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!

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

Role:  Volunteer
 

Review for Offcenter Community Arts Project, Albuquerque, NM, USA

Rating: 4 stars  

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.

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)

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

Role:  Volunteer & volunteer at We Art the People Folkfest.