Summer School of the Arts

It’s time for fun, creativity and friendship! Join us at the Art Gallery of Nova Scotia for a vibrant summer full of art. Get your imagination going with hands-on studio activities and explorations of the Gallery. Well-qualified and experienced artists & art educators will lead the classes. Experiment with a wide range of art materials, discover new art techniques and enjoy playing around with ideas and images!

Important details:

  • Class size is limited to 13 participants unless otherwise noted and unless there is more than one instructor.
  • Extended pickup is available for afternoon classes until 4:45pm for an additional fee.
  • Lunchtime supervision is available for an additional fee for full-day students only, as space is limited. Students are required to bring their lunch.  
  • No NUT products please!
  • Some programs will take advantage of the fine weather so a hat and sunscreen are recommended.
  • Art making can be messy so students remember to wear “work” clothes.

Students are to be dropped off and picked up at the Studios (accessible via the First Floor Lobby). There is no supervision before 8:30am. It is suggested that students pack a snack for mid-morning and/or mid-afternoon.

Registration & Fees

Purchase camps online or in person at the Art Gallery of Nova Scotia’s Information Desk, or by phone with credit card payment (Visa, Mastercard, Amex, Discover) at (902) 424-5280 during regular Gallery hours.  

Our program continues to grow in popularity, so please register early to avoid disappointment. A limited number of sponsorships are available on a needs basis. If there is insufficient registration, a workshop will be cancelled with fees refunded two weeks prior to the start of the workshop. There is a 10% non-refundable registration fee. There are no refunds two weeks prior to the class. 

Cost: $130 per a.m. or p.m. class/week. 

Gallery members are eligible to receive a 10% discount on class fees. If you have any questions about this discount or require a discount code please contact our Information Desk (902) 424-5280.

Luch Hour and Extended Pick-up options

We offer a lunch hour option at a cost of $15/week. Extended pick-up is offered for those attending afternoon classes until 4:45 pm for a fee of $10/week. Registration is required.
 

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Ages 5-12


July 4-8

Fabric Fun & Block Printing

Join artist Bess Forrestall to learn about the ancient craft of block printing. Students will design patterns and make rubber carvings for blocks to create a two-colour print. They will try their hand at smaller daily craft projects for extra fun and learning. Bess is eager to share the ideas and printmaking techniques she learned this past winter while working in Jaipur, India.

Age Time
5 – 7 9am – noon
8 – 12 1 – 4pm

Underwater Landscape in Clay

Get ready for a journey into the deep with ceramic artist Bethany Riordan-Butterworth. Students will explore the underwater world (including animals and plant forms) and learn how to make its inhabitants out of clay. Using inspiration from books, the outdoors and art on display at the Gallery, students will be inspired to make and invent masterpieces while investigating sculptural forms and surface decoration. This class will include small scale and large-scale projects, as well as collaborative work. As always, there will be lots of time for diving into the unexpected!

Please note we will not use the pottery wheel in this class.
 

Age Time
5 – 7 9am – noon
8 – 12 1 – 4pm

Beastly Art: Inspiration from Animals

From fish to foxes and birds to bison, Rosemary Clarke Young and her students will use an animal theme to explore a variety of art projects over the course of the week. There will be lots of painting and drawing, as well as opportunities to experiment with collage and printmaking techniques. Play around with lots of ideas, art techniques and materials!

Age Time
5 – 7 1 – 4pm
8 – 12 9am – noon

Out Of This World

Create fantastic worlds and imaginary cityscapes with artist Jenny Shi using various drawing and painting techniques inspired by artists old and new! People, houses, animals, colours, patterns, and textures--you name it, we’ll explore it. There will be lots of in-gallery sketching and tours to see the exhibitions to gather ideas and techniques for our own creations! 

Age Time
5 – 7 1 – 4pm
8 – 12 9am – noon

July 11-15

Imagine: The World of Mythical Creatures and Magical Monsters

With artist Melinda Spooner, students will imagine their own mythical creatures and magical monsters while working in clay, mixed media cloth painting and bookmaking. They will create spray-painted and stenciled cloth banners, imaginary clay animals, shadow puppet theatre and collage books. Learn about stories and myths from cultures around the world to create magical creatures from serpents, lake monsters, dragons, unicorns, to winged creatures.

Age Time
5 – 7 9am – noon
8 – 12 1 – 4pm

Capture the Light!

With photographer Brittany Warren, students will learn about two alternative methods of photography as they make their very own pinhole camera out of household objects and create cyanotypes – a blueprint photograph developed in the sun! Students will be able to experience firsthand, a photographic darkroom all the while learning about the roots of photography. It will be a fun-filled week of sunshine chasing and image making magic!

Age Time
5 – 7 1 – 4pm
8 – 12 9 am – noon

Design: Wonderful Wearable Art

Explore colour, texture and design with artist Sherry Lynn Jollymore. All the projects will be wearable! Students will learn basic sewing skills and use various printmaking techniques to create fantastic one of a kind wearable artworks. Let your individuality shine through in pieces made by and for YOU. We’ll end the week with a fashion exhibition of our creations!

Age Time
5 – 7 1 – 4pm
8 – 12 9 am – noon

The Great Art-Doors

Taking inspiration from the great outdoors, artist Tara Grude will create with her students: sculpture with an assortment of materials such as concrete and plastic; trick photography with mirrors; and an art garden in the Gallery courtyard. There will be lots of artmaking outdoors if the weather permits, so make sure to pack a hat and sunscreen!

Age Time
5 – 7 9am – noon
8 – 12 1 – 4pm

July 18-22

Pinball Wizards!

Join artist Heather Wilkinson to explore the world of springs and levers, rails and ruts. Students will set energy in motion as they create their own “old school” wooden pinball machine. Along the way they’ll explore the exuberant painted surfaces and game boards of Folk Art and vintage games to inspire their designs. Students will construct simple mechanisms, add 3D obstacles, and paint boldly to excite players and literally keep the ball rolling. This exploration of games brings storytelling, construction, reclaimed materials, and surface design together into one wildly creative experience for everyone!

Age Time
5 – 7 9am – noon
8 – 12 1 – 4pm

Artful Journals and Notebooks

With artist Lux Habrich, learn book-binding techniques and explore a large variety of creative mark-making exercises as you create a personal handmade, tactile notebook journal. Activities will include lots of experimental drawing, collage and playing around with colour, texture, and line!

Age Time
5 – 7 1 – 4pm
8 – 12 9am – noon

Let's Build Characters!

From making plushy animals, creating matchbox monsters, sculpting wire self-portraits, designing exquisite creatures, to designing 3D caricatures of ourselves, this course is all about building characters! A little bit of something for everyone; drawing, painting, sculpture techniques, and textiles with artist Tara Grude.

Age Time
5 – 7 1 – 4pm
8 – 12 9am – noon

Drawing with Imagination

This week will be full of drawings and imagination with artist Jenny Shi. Students will learn to draw mythical plants and animals from different cultures and create pop-up cards from the drawings at the end of the course. Everyone will be encouraged to draw large and explore textures and a wide range of drawing techniques while extending their imagination into a magical land.

Age Time
5 – 7 9am – noon
8 – 12 1 – 4pm

July 25-29

Puppetry

Artist Bess Forrestall will explore the ancient performance and craft of puppetry. Students will make their own puppets using papier mâché, paint and cloth; work together to create a backdrop for a performance; and try their hand at various other crafts such as coil baskets and wood block printing.

Age Time
5 – 7 1 – 4pm
8 – 12 9am – noon

Wild About Rainbows

Red, yellow, blue! With artist Gabriella Rizkallah students will immerse themselves in lots of colourful art-making this week. Learn more about the science and magic of colour by using paint and lots of other fun stuff to create a potpourri of art. Gallery visits will inspire students to see how different artists have used colour expressively.

Age Time
5 – 7 9am– noon
8 – 12 1 – 4pm

Mask-Making Mania

Create fabulous masks using a wide variety of art supplies and natural materials. Come and make your own special artworks that you can wear home. Be sure to bring your imagination along!

Age Time
5 – 7 9am – noon
8 – 12 1 – 4pm

Wire Works

Wire Works is sure to be fun as you explore the endless possibilities of wire in art. Draw with wire, create jewelry, and combine wire with other fantastic materials to create sculptures including small figures.

Age Time
5 – 7 1 – 4pm
8 – 12 9am – noon


August 8-12

Abstraction in Action

Join artist Tara Grude for a busy class for the creative and curious, full of all sorts of art-making activities! From drawing with our whole bodies, exploring abstract art through fun games, painting and collage, to whimsical sculpture and colourful weaving, you’ll be sure to leave this class with lots of vibrant creations!

Age Time
5 – 7 9 am – noon
8 – 12 1 – 4pm

Everything Painting!

Paint a face – paint a still life - paint a landscape - paint an abstract with your eyes closed! Learn all about colour, composition and basic drawing techniques while using the art works in the Gallery for inspiration.

Age Time
5 – 7 1 – 4pm
8 – 12 9am – noon

August 15-19

The Tiny Town

With artist Bess Forrestall, students will work together to imagine, build and create a collaborative tiny town. They will decide what their tiny town needs to be; a wonderful place to live – a harbour? A clock tower? A park? Sketching excursions to observe buildings that make Halifax such a great place to live will be part of the class. Students will also develop their own characters to live in the tiny town.

Age Time
5 – 7 9 am – noon
8 – 12 1 – 4pm

Marvelous Mixed Media

Combine paint, charcoal, pastels, and found objects into a mixed media piece of art to create a marvelous artwork! Working with Laurel Rath, students will have fun exploring various material combinations while learning skills in art fundamentals. Students will explore basics of art and design (line, colour, shape, space, texture, scale, size, value, form) as they discover more about drawing, collage, and painting.

Age Time
5 – 7 1 – 4pm
8 – 12 9am – noon

August 22-26

Fun Fashion Showcase: Design, Create & Walk the Runway

Be a designer of fashions for the runway! Join Anna Isabelle Scarth to create fun and unique upcycled clothes. Through sketching, sewing and finding inspiration for fashion in the world around them, participants will make one-of-a-kind personalized pieces. Learn basic design, re-design and embellishment to make a personalized style or fashion accessory.

Age Time
5 – 7 1 – 4pm
8 – 12 9am – noon

Collage Party

Join in on the collage party! This class will encourage students to experiment as they explore the wild world of collage. Students will work with a variety of materials to learn about the foundations of art and spontaneity in the creative process. Students will draw, paint, sculpt, tear, cut and paste materials together – the possibilities are endless!

Age Time
5 – 7 9am – noon
8 – 12 1 – 4pm

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