Performing arts incubator space: Community input wanted

 

The Ausherman Family Foundation will use the Artomatic 2016 arts festival to kick off a call for action from the people of Frederick County.

Artomatic, an unjuried festival of the performing and visual arts, will run May 7 through June 10 at 115 E. Church Street. The property was purchased by the Ausherman Family Foundation in the summer of 2015. The Foundation’s intention is to use the building to expand the arts in Frederick by providing a center of creativity and education.

Marvin Ausherman, chairman and co-founder of the Ausherman Family Foundation, said, “the Foundation is seeking input from the citizens of Frederick to share the experience of shaping the space as an arts entity that fits the needs and desires of the community.” He noted of the property purchase, “In partnership with the work being done by the Weinberg Center for the Arts and the Delaplaine Visual Arts Education Center, we can bring more life to the Arts & Entertainment District of Frederick and the cultural diversity of our county.”

Comment “wall”

During Artomatic, a community input “wall” will offer visitors and artists the opportunity to weigh in on a number of issues related to the property as a performing arts incubator space. Commenters will be able to share their wishes for the building on the wall, which will be located in the vestibule of the Artomatic festival facility. The wall is designed as a place to actively seek opinions from the citizens of Frederick County on the critical issue of arts in the community.

All comments are welcome. Suggested topics include:

  • How exactly should the space be envisioned?
  • Should it be a work/living space for artists or just a working space?
  • How should the space be configured (e.g., dance studios, music studios)?
  • How can the space enhance the expansion of the arts district in downtown Frederick?
  • Are you an artist? What are your space needs?
  • What should the space be called?

The Ausherman Family Foundation is especially seeking suggestions on a proposed name for the arts incubator space. “The name of the building will serve to reinforce its history and importance to the citizens of Frederick,” Marvin Ausherman said.

The property at 115 E. Church Street was originally built in 1815 by William Goldsborough. It later served as the Girls’ High School of Frederick and also was known at the Robert McGill property. In 1940, 115 E. Church Street became the home of the Frederick County Board of Education and housed the board offices until 2010.