The Academy Center of the Arts announces a new mobile arts program, Academy in Motion, aimed to reach members of the Greater Lynchburg community with barriers to accessing on-site arts programs at the Academy’s downtown campus. Delivered through a bus, converted into a mobile classroom, the Academy will now execute off-site art instruction at community centers, senior living facilities, public spaces, detention centers, and community conveninings.
As COVID-19 health regulations continue to evolve, Academy in Motion allows flexibility for access to the arts. “The beauty of this program is its flexibility,” says Geoffrey Kershner, Executive Director. “Programs can be delivered directly, conducted outside, and travel to a myriad of locations.”
Academy in Motion will offer painting, drawing, clay handbuilding, and craft instruction, as well as a wide variety of educational offerings beyond.
“While economic factors can be a common barrier to arts engagement, the Academy is acutely aware that there are other significant obstacles including transportation, timing, sense of acceptance or belonging in our spaces, physical accessibility of those with handicaps and limited mobility, and even having someone to attend a program with,” said Kershner. “To address those barriers, the Academy cannot be limited by its physical campus. With Academy in Motion, we will be able to bring the arts out to the community, not simply ask the community to come to the arts.”
Academy in Motion will expand existing programs established through years of partnerships, such as Altavista YMCA and the Jubilee Family Center, and build new partnerships across the non-profit, social service, and educational sectors. Additionally, the Academy hopes to pursue the development of curriculum beyond visual and fine arts, bringing hope and healing for those struggling with mental health concerns, addiction, and grief through this program in partnership with art and music therapists and organizations such as Bridges Treatment Center and Roads to Recovery.
Academy in Motion will participate in “Art in the Park” with Lynchburg Parks and Recreation on May, 15th, 2021, at Riverside Park. The event is from 10:00 PM to 3:00 PM and visitors are encouraged to visit the bus. The bus will also host a pop-up event in celebration of Mental Health Awareness Month at Riverfront Park in Downtown Lynchburg, on Saturday, May 21, 2021, from 4:00 PM to 7:00 PM.
For more information about Academy in Motion and how to engage the program, visit the Academy website at https://academycenter.org/aim/.
Academy in Motion was made possible through a generous grant from the Al Stroobants Foundation and has additional support from Moore and Giles, Inc. and Sonny Merryman, Inc.