Lewis Arts Studio
A Creative Haven
The Lewis Arts Studio is a creative haven for 4th – 8th grade students who have an interest in the visual arts. It is a place where talent and friendships flourish; where curiosity and commitment are required; where portfolios are developed, but most importantly, a place where upper elementary and middle school students can practice teamwork, communication, critical thinking, and problem solving as they become more sophisticated in their artistic craft and thinking.
The Lewis Arts Studio is a year-round program, with summer and school-year programming.
The Lewis Arts Studio Provides:
A Summer Program
During the summer, students meet Monday through Friday for a full day of art making, with Wednesdays being reserved for field trips to local cultural institutions. Students start their mornings participating in technique classes for three hours. In the afternoons, students engage more deeply with teaching artists to develop creative projects. The summer culminates with an exhibition of our students’ work.
During the academic year, students meet twice a month on Saturdays to continue honing their artistic skills, reunite with the friends they made over the summer, and enjoy cultural excursions.
Magnet Application Support
Throughout the program, students receive individualized attention in portfolio development and magnet audition preparation. Representatives from magnet high schools speak with students, and provide insights on portfolio preparation, audition performance tasks, and interview skills. The program also provides guidance to parents on how to be supportive of their children during the magnet school application process.
The Lewis Arts Studio faculty is a mix of professional artists and magnet arts teachers from Miami-Dade County Public Schools. In addition, prominent guest artists are brought in to lead presentations, workshops, and discussions.
The Facility & Outreach
The Lewis Arts Studio is located at 101 Grand Avenue in Coconut Grove. With ample natural light, concrete floors and flexible work spaces, the studio is a warm and inviting place that transforms with every student project. Whether students are exhibiting, setting up a film or photo session, or participating in a still life class, the studio is open, available, and in the service of our students and their imaginations.
The studio is purposefully positioned for community outreach, located directly across the street from The Coconut Grove Cares Barnyard Community Center. Through collaboration, the studio and artist faculty proudly provide visual and performing arts classes to young children in the neighborhood.
Founding Partners & Accomplishments
The Lewis Arts Studio piloted its first program during the summer of 2009, thanks to the collaborative efforts of Arts for Learning, Design and Architecture Senior High, the City of Miami Mayor’s Office, The Miami Foundation and the Jonathan D. & Mark C. Lewis Foundation. Each of these entities played a key role in establishing the framework, environment, content and resources for the program’s continued success.
Arts for Learning envisioned, designed, developed, and directs the Lewis Arts Studio.
Design and Architecture Senior High (DASH) served as an advisor to Arts for Learning during the design of the portfolio development component and also helped to establish the high school mentorship effort. DASH remains a strategic collaborator and advisor.
The City of Miami Mayor’s Office helped network all of the partners in 2009, and introduced the Jonathan D. & Mark C. Lewis Foundation to Arts for Learning. The City of Miami also provided The Lewis Arts Studio its first home at the Little Haiti Cultural Center.
The Miami Foundation awarded a $10,000 seed grant to support the program.
Jonathan D. & Mark C. Lewis Foundation provided the lead financial support to make the studio a reality. Today the Foundation continues to provide the annual gift to sustain studio activities, operations, and scholarships. The Foundation also serves as a strategy partner to help the studio grow in depth and impact. The program is proudly named after Jonathan D. & Mark C. Lewis, for their commitment to the arts, youth and community impact.
“It’s difficult to express the gratitude I have for this program. I entered Lewis Art Studio around 2 and half years ago at a low point in my life and a time in which visual arts lost its significance but through my time with the staff members and students I have grown as a visual artist and person and for that my infinite thanks.
I can’t even begin to express my gratitude for the program as it has helped me grow as an artist and person.”
“I think that the Lewis Arts Studio is honestly a really great program. You learn to overcome challenges and that you can make really great work if you learn and try. The teachers are always there to help and motivate you, and overall I love this program.”
“Lewis Art means a lot to me. I can’t even find words to describe it and I have only been here for a year. I feel so safe and comfortable with being around people that can make me laugh and can understand me and not judge. Not only are the people great, they got me into my dream school DASH.”