PORTLAND, Maine (April 29, 2016)— The Maine Center for Creativity (MCC) relaunched its signature Art All Around program recently with the first of a series of open-to-the-public collaborative art workshops in Westbrook. The re-imagined initiative is designed to engage communities in creating collaborative art installations and contribute to economic development in select Maine cities and towns, starting this year with Westbrook.

“Art All Around is about re-imagining a way to interact with the community – when you look to revitalize a community, you do that by revitalizing the people,” commented Donna Dwyer, President & CEO of My Place Teen Center, one of the partnering organizations. “It’s not every day that our students have the chance to contribute on such a grand scale. As a kid, you get to bring beauty to your community and be a part of something much bigger than yourself.”

My Place Teen Center is joined by the Westbrook Community Center in running on-going Art All Around programming with its students leading up to the installation in August.

“Programs like this provide our students opportunity to be creative in a no-pressure environment where they can experiment creatively, learn about the local environment, and develop goal-setting habits and perseverance,” said Abbie Carter, Site Coordinator of Westbrook LEARNS at the Westbrook Community Center.

“What’s nice about this partnership with Maine Center for Creativity and Westbrook is that there’s already a huge existing arts community and this project hits on all four points of the Main Street approach,” said Abigail Cioffi, Coordinator of the Downtown Westbrook Coalition. “There’s mutual excitement to generate this kind of activity in Westbrook and to serve as a model for other Main Street communities!”

Last week’s initial workshops kicked off a three-month preparatory process for Art All Around with ongoing workshops in partnership with these and other area organizations. The program will culminate in a one-week art installation in locations in and around downtown Westbrook in August. The installation will comprise thousands of hand-crafted art pieces made by community members from recycled and recyclable raw materials.