A Legacy of Art
Here you can find out what we do, how we do it, and who we serve, as well as meet the people behind all the work we do! Browse the tabs below for more information.
To create arts opportunities for every member of the community.
To offer a non-judgmental, creatively open environment.
To bridge the gaps between cultures in our community.
To nurture the arts, foster creativity, promote education, and enrich the community.
We accomplish this mission through Exhibits, Education, and Events.
Local, regional, national, and international artists are featured in our three galleries, whose content changes on a monthly or quarterly basis. Our most significant annual exhibit takes place during the first quarter of each year, engages the entire building and staff, and highlights the links between the arts and sciences. Prior annual exhibits explored topics as diverse as dinosaurs, trains and outer space.
Our Wild West! exhibit featured an interactive performance and demonstration about gold mining.
Classes, camps, and lessons are available throughout the year to provide high-quality arts education close to home. Private and group music lessons on a variety of instruments, voice lessons, dance, painting, and drawing classes are available for children and adults.
Our class offerings include Beginning Ballroom Dance.
The Arts Center hosts a variety of regularly-occuring events throughout the year, such as our monthly Lunch with the Arts series, bi-monthly Starry Night Studio Painting Classes, exhibiting artist receptions, juried art shows, and seasonal and holiday events.
Our monthly Lunch with the Arts series allows the community to engage with local and national artists, like Pat Isaman and her quilts.
The Community Arts Center was originally constructed in 1909 as the United States Post Office and later became known as the Federal Building. After the Post Office moved in 1961, the building held military recruitment offices and U.S. Court of Appeals Judge Pierce Lively's law offices.
In 2004, through the generous support of our community, the building was refurbished to its original beauty with the addition of modern amenities. It is now the home to all things arts in our community. The historical old post office which once stored letters now has galleries, studios, and classrooms which allow for the teaching, practicing, and viewing of the arts. In addition, the adaptive reuse of this landmark preserves our historic downtown and enhances our cultural heritage.In fact, the Arts Center is now part of Danville's rich and vibrant Arts District.
Original construction photographs and other memorabilia can be found in the Archive Room on the second floor of the Community Arts Center.
The Arts Center provides crucial arts programming to the people in our community who most need it. Though much of this work goes on behind the scenes and away from the public eye, the Arts Center is continually reaching out to the elderly, those with low-income, and/or physical, mental, and developmental disabilities. When we say we want to provide arts opportunities for every member of the community, we mean it!
The Arts Cart, often dubbed "Art with a Heart," is a program that takes arts activities to those with mental, physical, and emotional disabilities, or those who are touched by poverty. We partner with service organizations like Big Brothers/Big Sisters, Pioneer Vocational Industrial Services, The Bruce Hall Day Treatment Center, and Southwood Comprehensive Care to identify those people most in need of valuable arts experiences regardless of their abilities.
The Arts Cart makes arts activities, such as painting, drawing, and music-making accessible to members of the community who otherwise might not have an opportunity to experience them. This program fosters creativity, develops artistic skills, promotes self-expression and improves self-image.
Meet Our Staff
Executive Director Mary Beth Touchstone
Mary Beth joined the Arts Center in February 2009 and works closely with our board to make sure that we know our mission, that we actively plan how to achieve that mission, and that our organization runs smoothly in all respects.
Before coming to the Arts Center, Mary Beth was the Vice President of Technology Management at JP Morgan Chase.
Mary Beth's favorite thing about the Arts Center: I like being able to effect change so quickly and directly. When a person here has a great idea, we can implement it in as little as a week, directly affecting how people in our community experience art. It's a great feeling knowing that I was directly involved in exposing people to something that will change their lives forever.
Programming Director Brandon Long
Brandon joined the Arts Center in January of 2007 and is in charge of scheduling and hanging exhibits, maintaining gallery spaces, developing content for the annual blockbuster exhibit, instructing Starry Night Studios sessions, leading Arts Cart outreach programs, creating innovative new programming for the Community Arts Center, and creating all of our graphic designs.
Brandon was born an artist and a musician, but before working at the Arts Center, he was a Merchandising Coordinator at Joseph Beth Booksellers.
Brandon's favorite thing about the Arts Center: The reason I come to work every day is that we are providing a unique experience for artists young and old that simply didn’t exist on a local level when I was growing up. My daughter, at five years old, is one of the most driven, creative young people I’ve ever been around and I can’t help but think that the Arts Center is one of the main proponents of her enthusiasm. Sometimes people will tell her, “Jillian, you’re going to be a great artist someday,” and she replies, “I already AM an artist.” That’s when I know that at least one person has fully gotten our message and mission, and that makes it all worth it.
Angela formally joined the Arts Center in June 2012, but she has been involved as a volunteer and exhibiting artist for several years. Visitors may recognize her as Hobo Lynn and Maria Celeste Galilei from our All Aboard! and SPACE: Imagine That! exhibits.
Angela coordinates and manages classes and camps, designing classes for music, dance, drama, and visual arts. She has a Masters in Teaching from the University of the Cumberlands and supplements her time at the Arts Center with work as an ESS and substitute teacher in the local school system.
Angela's favorite thing about the Arts Center: I love being able to relate math, history, and science to the arts, while having talented students of all ages practice their musical instruments in the background. I love that the Community Arts Center encourages me and others to be creative!
Carrie joined the Arts Center in November of 2012 and is responsible for devising, implementing, and executing all individual, corporate, and foundation giving to the Arts Center. In this position, Carrie will use her background in the arts and extensive fundraising experience to build a development program which will successfully meet the needs of the Arts Center and the community.
Before coming to the Arts Center, Carrie worked as a Foundation Representative at the Ephraim McDowell Health Care Foundation.
Carrie's favorite thing about the Arts Center: I love that the Community Arts Center is an organizational chameleon. It is fluid and flexible, and this ability to change and adapt enables the Arts Center to serve the artistic needs of everyone in our community no matter their age, background, or skill level. I am incredibly excited to be joining the Arts Center staff, to play a role in the growth of this great organization, and to see first hand what a difference the arts can make in people's lives.
Meet our Board
The Arts Center is served by a rotating set of board members selected from all different areas of the Danville community that devote their time, money, and talents to fulfill the mission of the Arts Center throughout the year.
President Vice President Treasurer Secretary
Mary Quinn Ramer Jane McKune Matt Sirasky Susie Allen
Sharon Duncan Steve Hoffman Paula Meckes Dr. Rob Rettie Phnomphone "Paul" Kirby Stafford
Portraits coming soon of:
Dr. Tom Baeker, Emeritus Board Member
Check out these photos of some of our inventory, and stop by to see the rest of our toys, games, and crafts!