Windsor Art Center officially opens studios in former train station
By Lisa Stone - ReminderNews
Windsor - posted Wed., Sep. 11, 2013
Windsor Art Center has transformed the old Windsor train station into its new studio space, and invited the public to the grand opening on Sept. 4.
The building is still owned by the town of Windsor, but the W.A.C. leases the building to provide local artists the space they need to create works of art. According to the president of the board of directors, Wayne Dembrowski, the building was built in 1870 and it is on the historical register. “Amtrak built this building as their train station. Many years ago, they sold the building for something like $1 to the town of Windsor. Since then, the building has been leased out for several businesses, but approximately four years ago, it became vacant. Approximately eight months ago, we began leasing the building in hopes of creating studios for local artists. With a lot of work, the building is now what we hoped it would be.”
The W.A.C. also teaches classes at the studios. “We hope to have several functions going on in the building,” said W.A.C.’s manager, Amanda Pawlik. “We are so proud of how it all came together. This is a much-needed space for our community.”
As of now, four out of five spaces have been rented. There is still a space in the basement that is approximately 600 square feet. “We need to get the right type of artist for that space,” said Dembrowski. “We have to be sure that our artists are safe, so we need to be sure that the artist that rents that space is not using some kind of combustible materials. We take safety very seriously.” The W.A.C. rents the studios for a smaller amount than other places. If it can get the last space rented, it will break even with the cost of the lease.
“I am here today to help support the artists,” said Mary Beth Welsh, of the First Town Downtown organization. “I love my earrings that Evelyn Pelati made. She is very gifted and I know these are a one of a kind pair of earrings. I am so happy with the way the studios turned out.”
LeaAnn Cogswell is a portrait artist as well as a sculptor. “I love my new studio,” said Cogswell. “This is an inspiring place to work. Eventually, I will have people come to my studio for portraits and things like that. This is a great community and a peaceful place to work.”
Lorraine Schoenwolff is a member of the W.A.C. and she couldn’t wait for the opening. “The Art Center has added so much to Windsor,” said Schoenwolff. “The studio is a great step further.”
Visitors Murielle Plourde and William Lamoureux love to explore the arts. “We go to art museums and things like that. We were curious about the changes in the building,” said Plourde. “We all need to support the arts. It’s part of our history.”
For more information on the Windsor Art Center, visit www.windsorartcenter.org.