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Cornerstone presents renovated studio during First Thursday

Cornerstone Center for the Arts is presenting the opening of its newly renovated J. Combs Ceramic Studio on February 1 during First Thursday.

The George and Francis Ball Foundation gave Cornerstone a grant to expand and refine the ceramic studio. Renovations for the studio include fresh paint, new floors, more tools and equipment and expanded studio space. 

Jessie Fisher, Director of Education and Communication for Cornerstone Center for the Arts, said the expansion was a necessary step. 

“We have more than tripled our enrollment in those classes,” Fisher said. “This program has been such a big part of what we do at Cornerstone that giving it its own dedicated studio space for all of its students to use was just the natural thing to do.”

The Ceramic program at Cornerstone started 15 years ago, with about 15 students enrolled. In 2017, there were more than 100 students enrolled in ceramic classes. 

Workers at Made in Muncie, 313 S. Walnut St., said they also noticed an increase in enrollment in their pottery classes over the past few months.

The increase in the community’s involvement in pottery classes seems to be an emerging trend in Muncie. 

Fisher said more people may be interested in pottery classes, because pottery can be therapeutic. 

“It’s good for your health. Your mental health is just as important as your physical health and your well-being, and having that creative outlet in your life that you can fall back on when everything else in life isn’t going well, but you have that artistic-creative side that you can express, you just generally will be a more well-rounded person,” Fisher said.

Several other local businesses will be open for First Thursday, and will have demonstrations and exhibits to show off their art. 

Art is a large and growing part of the Muncie community. Carl Schafer, owner of Gordy Fine Art 

and Framing, said there has always been an interest in art in Muncie. 

“There are so many art places in our community, because we are, I believe, a University town, 

and we have a lot of important people living in our city that are interested in the quality of life 

that the arts bring to the community,” Schafer said.

First Thursday will be from 5-8 p.m. on February 1 in downtown Muncie. For more information 

on what businesses will be open and what they plan on doing, visit www.downtownmuncie.org.

You can contact Kelsey Dickeson with comments at kmdickeson@bsu.edu.