June 2018: ArtCentral - June Updates

June 4, 2018

ArtCentral: June Updates

By Elizabeth Freer
Matthews Opera House, ArtCentral Manager

Elizabeth Freer, ArtCentral Mgr.

ArtCentral Spearfish has several exciting projects both underway and coming up!

Linking Fences is gaining momentum for our second season. We have a few community artist fences, as well as a few other community fences that are “under construction.”

We’re excited to see the creative energy of our community displayed around town. Will you join with some friends and take part in adding some creativity to our community fences?

Linking Fences: Not just in Spearfish anymore

The Linking Fences project is also spreading this year past Spearfish, and we have several projects that will be appearing in Lead. Cat Scratch Studios is actively using art as a tool to engage and connect the Lead community. There will be fun projects appearing in both communities this summer.

The goal of ‘Linking Fences’ is to engage the community in a creative project that not only adds visual interest to our town but also uses the fences that typically divide us to forge new connections. ‘Linking Fences’ offers an opportunity for everyone to express their creativity and make new connections. We are open to a wide (and creative!) definition of ‘fences’ and look forward to seeing how creative our communities can be this summer. Contact us by email (see below) or call The Matthews for details on simple ways you could get involved with the project! We will provide a sign and include your project on the roster of fences.

Fall projects

We have two exciting projects coming this fall. A second season of the ArtCentral Film Festival will take place this fall thanks to the generous support of the Northern Black Hills Rotary Club as well as funding through the Bush Foundation Community Innovation Grant. We will be screening four films (showing for free!) starting in September, with short discussions following each film on how the films relate to our community.

As a reminder, all four of the films screened as a part of Season One of the ArtCentral Film Festival, are available to check out from Grace Balloch Memorial Library. Take a break from the heat this summer and visit the library to check out the DVDs.

This fall, ArtCentral, collaborating with  BHSU’s Theater Department, will be presenting a production called “Art in My Life” which will address important questions such as: Do we need art in our lives? Is it optional, only for a select few, or is it indispensable? “Art in My Life” will examine how art affects us in our everyday life, why it is important, and what the world around us would be like if art was taken away. More information on “Film Festival: Season Two” and “Art in My Life” will be coming soon.

We hope you’ll join us in Linking Fences across our communities, as well as participating in our upcoming fall events. How can you practice and encourage creativity this summer?


ArtCentral is a community collaboration, funded by a 2016 Bush Foundation Community Innovation Grant, to centralize the arts as an integrated asset for inclusivity, economic development, and outreach in Spearfish. As this is a community-based project, we welcome feedback and suggestions, as well as volunteers. Please contact us by email at [email protected] if you are interested in volunteering or have suggestions.

Lead by Elizabeth Freer, ArtCentral manager at The Matthews, the project brings together a committee of advocates, artists, and residents working together over two years to create a new model for arts planning and outreach, focusing on the themes of belonging, inclusion, equity, rural connectedness, cultivating creativity, imagining space, and the arts as a community development catalyst.

“I am excited for this opportunity to work in Spearfish with The Matthews on this innovative and important project to advance the arts in our community,” stated Freer. “I encourage local residents who are interested in participating in this process to apply to be a part of the committee.”

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