BOONE, N.C. — Appalachian State University’s Turchin Center for the Visual Arts (TCVA) recently created a Little Free Art Pantry with free art supply bundles for the community. The art pantry is located near TCVA’s front entrance, in a large metal cabinet. To date, 30 bundles have been taken and another 50 bundles are ready to be placed in the pantry.
Christy Chenausky and Shauna Caldwell, director and assistant director, respectively, of arts education and outreach at TCVA, developed the idea as a twist on the national Little Free Library movement — a book-sharing initiative in which community members build enclosed bookcases filled with free books in public and residential spaces.
Chenausky and Caldwell gathered gently used materials, including paint, brushes, canvases, glue and journals, and created themed bundles with instructions for use. The themes — which include “Paint Night,” “Watercolor,” “Visual Journaling” and “Collage” — are modeled after the workshop series TCVA typically offers each semester to Appalachian students and community members.
The bundles do not have to be returned. To address sanitation concerns related to COVID-19, the pantry includes disposable gloves and disinfectant to allow patrons to clean the bundles before they take them, and the pantry itself is regularly sanitized and re-stocked.
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About the Turchin Center for the Visual Arts
Located on 423 W. King St. at the crossroads of campus and community, the Turchin Center for the Visual Arts at Appalachian State University engages visitors in dynamic and accessible exhibition, education, outreach and collection programs. These programs inspire and support a lifelong engagement with the visual arts and create opportunities for participants to learn more about themselves and the world around them. Learn more at https://tcva.appstate.edu/about/visit.
About Appalachian State University
As the premier public undergraduate institution in the state of North Carolina, Appalachian State University prepares students to lead purposeful lives as global citizens who understand and engage their responsibilities in creating a sustainable future for all. The Appalachian Experience promotes a spirit of inclusion that brings people together in inspiring ways to acquire and create knowledge, to grow holistically, to act with passion and determination, and to embrace diversity and difference. Located in the Blue Ridge Mountains, Appalachian is one of 17 campuses in the University of North Carolina System. Appalachian enrolls more than 20,000 students, has a low student-to-faculty ratio and offers more than 150 undergraduate and graduate majors.