Art Camp

The Boys and Girls Club of Carbondale (BGCC) and Carbondale Community Arts (CCA) are seeking artistic workshop proposals that develop community pride and enhance a positive sense of place for the residential neighborhoods that make up Carbondale’s total community. Workshops will take place in select Carbondale locations between October 2015 and April 2016 as part of “Here We Live,” a joint program of BGCC and CCA that is being undertaken with major support from the National Endowment for the Arts.

Proposed workshops may utilize any media (or combination thereof) and should each be designed to involve 15-20 community participants who will be guided to express their individual and collective view of community (Here We Live) through creative pursuits.

Workshop activities may take place in 1-5 sessions and should result in a work product (mural, sculpture, performance, film, dance, etc.) representing that shared vision. These works will be displayed/performed/shared at the “Here We Live” community festival to take place on the Boys and Girls Club campus on April 30, 2016.


Program Goals

The goals of this initiative are

●      to broaden access to interactive and multi-generational arts experiences;

●      to give creative voice to residents of the neighborhoods  and other-defined “communities” in Carbondale;

●      to explore how a community affects those who share it and to expand our means of expressing our sense of place; and

●      to build bridges outside our normal circles of engagement.

The Southern Arts Fund is a Community Arts Access Program administered by Carbondale Community Arts with major funding support from the Illinois Arts Council Agency. Additional financial support for the program is provided by the City of Carbondale and by institutional and individual donors throughout the region.

Each year the Fund distributes tens of thousands of state and local dollars in program grants each year to individual artists, arts organizations, and schools throughout the southern twenty-six counties of Illinois. Since 2001 more than 200 grants have been awarded to area schools and to organizations like the African American Museum, the Southern Illinois Children’s Choir, the Grand Chain Civic Club, the Jackson County Stage Company, and the Southern Illinois Irish Festival.

2018 Application Early Deadline November 3, 2017 

Final 2018 Application Deadline: January 15, 2018


Downloadable BUDGET SHEET



Southern Illinois has been called a mecca for visual artists.  The serene environment, the reasonable cost of living, the energy generated by the SIU Carbondale School of Art and Design and John a Logan College, and the emerging gallery culture lay a perfect canvas for creativity.

During the winter of 2012/2013 CCA will be working on roster of visual artists from southern Illinois whose work is available through their studios and/or on line.  If you are interested in being included in this list please send contact information, a brief biographical statment, and three images of current or recent work to This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

April 24th, 2016, from 1:00 pm to 3:30 pm

In October and early November  of 2011 Carbondale Community Arts and the University Museum of SIU Carbondale  hosted the Smithsonian Museum on Main Street Exhibit, "The Way We Worked". Throughout the month CCA also partnered with galleries and museums across southern Illinois to present "Working in Southern Illinois", a series of exhibits and programs highlighting the history and development of southern Illinois' workforce. (Click here for more about The Way We Worked and other Smithsonian Institution Museum on Main Street opportunities.)


In preparation for the exhibit, co-chairs Gayle Klam and Mary O'Hara worked with University Museum Director Dona Bachmann and curator Nate Steinbrink to gather hundreds of photographs and conducted scores of interviews with area residents.

Carbondale-based highlights of the six week project included

  • a panel discussion about the future work in southern Illinois,
  • a special presentation about the history of the southern Illinois migrant community,
  • a focus exhibit on the Good Luck Glove Factory,
  • an exhibit of paintings by Robert Ketchens depicting the Missouri Sharecroppers Strike of 1939, and
  • a special exhibit at the African American Museum of Southern Illinois about the Ayer and Lord Railroad Tie Plant

 Other regional exhibits were coordinated through the Southern Illinois Association of Museums (SIAM) and its member organizations.

Many of Working in Southern Illinois photographs that were exhibited at the University Museum will be on display from mid-April through May in the atrium of Carbondale's University Mall. 

Detail from Robert Ketchens painting in Sharecroppers' Strike ExhibitDetail from Robert Ketchens painting in Sharecroppers' Strike Exhibit   Visitors at "The Way We Worked" during University Museum openingVisitors at "The Way We Worked" during University Museum opening


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