In the heart of downtown Lawrenceville is an organization that has been bringing artists, aspiring artists and visitors to the quaint town since 2009: the Lawrenceville Main Street (LMS) Artists Network.

Part gallery, part classes and events, and all volunteer-run, the non-profit Lawrenceville Main Street Artists Network opened in 2009 at the behest of the Lawrenceville Main Street Board. The goal was to bring an artistic presence to the village to support the community’s interest and to increase tourism. An initial 25 artists banded together to create what is now a vibrant place to exhibit, see, and learn about art, as well as a place to purchase original artwork at affordable prices.

"Gallery members pay monthly dues and in turn may display and sell their work in the gallery," said the LMS Artists Network Marketing/PR Chair and artist Denise Schwartz. "Our members also participate in committees, and many teach classes."

LMS Artists Network offers art classes, workshops, and school break and summer camp for adults/teens and children. There is a robust offering of topics from "Animal Fun" and "Hanging with the Great Masters" to "Cardboard Roll Puppet Theatre" and "Handmade Holiday Gifts" for kids, and "Acrylic Painting" and "Wine Glass Painting" to "Watercolor" and "The Art of Re-Invention" for adults/teens. Popular "Craft Parties" also are available for kids and adults of all ages.

"Events are a big part of what we do, too," Schwartz added. "Every second Saturday we host a free themed reception at the gallery. There’s music, food, and the artwork changes to accommodate the theme. It’s a great way for the public to interact with the artists and learn more about the LMS Artists Network."

Another regular event is ArtTalk, informal evening gatherings with professionals who can provide valuable insight into the field. ArtTalks have featured "Marketing Your Artwork Digitally," "How to Get Into a Juried Show," and "History of Oil Paint Colors." Other events tie into the community, such as the Lawrenceville Farmer’s Market, Lawrence Township Community Day and more.

Interested in supporting the arts, but can only draw stick figures? Or know an artist who would like to get involved in a smaller way? Patron, Supporting and Network Artist memberships are available, and offer benefits such as a discount card, opportunities to exhibit, invitations to openings and events, and more, depending on the membership level.

"Artists have a tendency to operate in their own bubble," Schwartz noted. "The LMS Artists Network helps artists connect with each other and with the community. One way artists connect is through our workshops, like the ‘Artist Trading Card’ workshop. Historically, artists have made small cards to trade with other artists so they can share their work. We help them to create, connect, show their work and more."

The LMS Artists Network currently is looking for members at all levels. For more information, visit www.lmsartistsnetwork.com, email info@lmsartistsnetwork.com or call 609-512-1359.

Lawrenceville Main Street Artists Network. 2683 Main Street, Lawrenceville.

609-512-1359.

info@lmsartistsnetwork.com. www.lmsartistsnetwork.com

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