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APSU Community School of the Arts’ summer arts camp immerses children in creative experiences

Community School of the Arts (CSA) at APSUClarksville, TN – The nose on Evelyn Damron’s ceramic dog didn’t quite turn out right, but that just gave the 10-year-old a chance to improvise.

And her dog became a mouse.

“I just kind of went along with it, and now I just love this piece,” she said.

Evelyn and her friend, Larissa Capitani, 8, not only loved the pieces they made during the daily ceramics workshops at the Community School of the Arts (CSA) summer arts camp, they loved everything they did at the weeklong day camp.

They also loved painting, drawing, dancing, and playing games. And after five days of ukulele training, they loved strumming “I’m Yours” and “Just the Way You Are” for their parents.
 
“What’s great about this week is just how interactive and how special it’s been,” Evelyn said. “It’s been a real treat to be here.”
 
And a week at summer arts camp beat doing normal schoolwork.
 
“School is not the worst thing on the planet,” Evelyn said, “but it’s literally not the best thing – for any circumstances whatsoever.”

An Immersive Art Experience

Austin Peay State University Community School of the Arts’ Summer Arts Camp. (APSU)
Austin Peay State University Community School of the Arts’ Summer Arts Camp. (APSU)

This July’s summer arts camp was a CSA’s first. The camp immersed children ages 8-15 in arts experiences in drawing, painting, ceramics, movement, photography and music.

Over two weeks, CSA hosted two camps, each featuring top-tier instruction from Austin Peay professors, alumni and graduate students using the university’s state-of-the-art facilities and equipment.


The camps engaged children interested in the arts in a more immersive experience, including the ukulele performance at the end that accompanied an exhibition of the art the students created during the week.

CSA’s coordinator, Kevin Loveland Jr., plans to have the camp again next summer.

Austin Peay State University Community School of the Arts’ Summer Arts Camp. (APSU)
Austin Peay State University Community School of the Arts’ Summer Arts Camp. (APSU)

“Everyone has been talking about how much fun they are having,” Loveland said during the second week. “It’s definitely something that the CSA will continue to pursue.”

Until then, CSA is gearing up for its fall classes and workshops, which start in September. Austin Peay will announce the fall slate – including new theatre classes and a Halloween makeup workshop – soon.

Just like at the summer arts camp, master artists lead the CSA’s regular classes and workshops. For more information about CSA, call 931.221.7034 or email .


This Summer’s Instructors

The instructors at this summer’s camps were:

  • Eboné Amos, dance and movement. Amos is an assistant professor in the African American Studies program at Austin Peay State University.
  • Colin Isotti, music. Isotti is a music graduate student at APSU.
  • Astyr Minic, drawing and painting. Minic earned her Master of Fine Arts at the University of Washington and her Bachelor of Fine Arts from APSU, where she teaches.
  • Jonathan Wheeler, photography. Wheeler earned his Bachelor of Science at Austin Peay State University.
  • Amalia Wills, ceramics. Wills earned her Bachelor of Fine Arts at Austin Peay State University and is working toward an art education degree.
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