The History of the Northfield Arts Guild - Book Cover

This month, the Northfield Arts Guild is thrilled to release the beautiful new book, "Celebrating Arts and Community, The History of the Northfield Arts Guild" by Bruce William Colwell.

This labor of love celebrates 60 years of art and creative opportunity in Northfield and beyond. We can’t wait to get this book into the hands of our beloved community and let its pages serve as a guide for other communities, as well as a celebration of what has been, and fuel for the dreams of what will be.

The book explores several themes that are relevant to all community work and all programs striving to make communities the best they can be. In the words of author, Bruce Colwell:

• Establishing the Arts Guild was a natural outgrowth of Northfield’s community identity and historical commitment to lifelong learning.

• The Guild offered an opportunity for residents to participate in the arts and develop their own creative lives. Consequently, the Northfield Arts Guild’s mission was intentionally and specifically local and amateur: to both support local artists and to provide all residents with opportunities to participate in the arts, whether in theater productions, art education classes, or community art events, and whether as participants, audience members, or consumers.

• The Arts Guild unified the town and acted as a “mixing agent” of various Northfield communities, through the universal human need for creative expression. The Guild was, and is, a profoundly democratic institution, here for all citizens, as everyone in the community is a creative being and a lifelong learner. Hence the words emblazoned on the Arts Guild building: All Kinds of Art, All Kinds of People.

We invite all members of our community and the surrounding area to visit the Northfield Arts Guild. Stop by our shop on Division Street to see the creative and beautiful works of over 100 local artists – and buy your copy of the newly released Guild history book. Make plans now to come to our gallery reception celebrating the amazing work of the Honors Art students from Northfield High School on Friday, May 20.

Look for our new summer course catalog featuring many classes, opportunities, and events to flex your creative muscles and hone your skills in the visual and performing arts in a fun and relaxing way. Register your child for Kids Spin through the Arts – a program to try a wide variety of artistic disciplines and then take a deeper dive in one area of each child’s choosing. (This program comes at no cost to families due to generous community grants.)

Enjoy two outdoor concerts by the Cannon Valley Regional Orchestra on June 17 and 18. Buy tickets for our summer theatrical production, Peter and the Starcatcher appearing at the Guild Theater in July. There are so many ways to play your part in creating a vibrant arts community in Northfield and throughout the region and, as we have for 60 years, we invite you to share in the mission.

In the words of author Colwell again, “the Northfield Arts Guild, founded 60 years ago, is a natural outgrowth of the identity of Northfield and its historical commitment to lifelong learning. Its vibrant programs, classes, and support for the arts are committed to bringing together people, young and old, from across the wider community, nurturing their creativity and their senses of wonder and exploration.”

Thank you, Bruce William Colwell, for this beautiful gift of history that will preserve our memories into perpetuity. Thank you to our community for your unending and unfailing support and commitment. We are who we are because of you. All Kinds of Art, All Kinds of People!

Andrea Sjogren is the executive director at the Northfield Arts Guild.

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