Before ArtHaus became a reality, the art department of Spruce Creek High School was striving for new and innovative ways to educate students and realized an important element was missing from the students’ education. Art students lacked a professional venue to display their work and complete the artistic experience. This insight led to the concept of the ArtHaus Student Gallery at Spruce Creek High School in 1994. Tim Ludwig, Art Department chairman and art teacher Laurie Gomon Ring and additional art department faculty began envisioning a three-walled edition to Spruce Creek High School in Port Orange. Through the efforts of these individuals, together with many volunteer students, teachers, parents and businesses the concept became a reality. This concept blossomed into a freestanding building owned by the City of Port Orange in 1996 for the utilization of all Volusia County students. ArtHaus was incorporated at this time as a 501 (c) 3 organization.
A unique partnership was formed between ArtHaus, the City of Port Orange, and the School District of Volusia County that set new standards in arts education. Ken Parker, Port Orange City Manager, whose children attended Spruce Creek High at the time, began to hear about the emerging cultural organization called ArtHaus. Our original name of incorporation in 1996 was ArtHaus at Spruce Creek Foundation. Knowing that Port Orange lacked any cultural entities or organizations, he encouraged ArtHaus to partner with the city. He offered the ArtHaus Director Brad Budd, 1999-2003, an office in City Hall to run our programs and to plan on building an ArtHaus on the city property where Palmer College stands today. This would include a Student Gallery, several classrooms, storage and a catering kitchen that could accommodate wedding receptions and other parties that the Lakeside Community center is now used for. They wrote a grant for $100,000 to begin this process. An Orlando architect was hired to create the initial plans and mock up drawings of the structure. Within a year or so of this occurring, Palmer College successfully approached the city about building a new campus at City Center. At this time, the city began to look for other locations where we could build, but nothing seemed right. In 2000, the city offered ArtHaus the use of the facility at 3840 Ridgewood Ave. which had been vacant for some time. Some of the original grant monies were used to fully renovate the building including a new flat roof. Many volunteers helped to complete the renovation and to prepare it for art exhibits, art classes and administration offices.
In 2000 ArtHaus signed a 5 year lease with the city granting our yearly rental payments. After two 5 year leases, the city decided to write 2 year leases. Without these granted leases, ArtHaus would not have survived 20 years after its inception. As of today, ArtHaus continues to flourish and grow. Every year new classes and outreach opportunities are added to the ArtHaus program schedule. With ongoing support ArtHaus will continue to carry out its valuable work in showcasing student artwork, providing art education programs and promoting cultural enrichment for the community. ArtHaus has grown into the new millennium with even more territory to cover and a vision that encompasses the creativity in everyone.
ArtHaus was named in honor of the Bauhaus, a German state-sponsored school of art which united artists and schools of thought in the 1920-30s. Bauhaus formed unified academies incorporating art colleges, colleges of arts and crafts and schools of architecture, that help to promote closer cooperation. Bauhaus served as a foundation for uniting artists and schools of thought elevating each to a new level of understanding through association. This unification extended to its teaching programs in which feeling and thinking, intuition and intellect, expression and construction belonged inextricably together. ArtHaus of Volusia-Flagler Counties (the 2nd registered name used for ArtHaus) furthers these ideals through its programs by uniting artists, teachers, students and the community for the purpose of:
“Instilling the Spirit of Creativity & Self Expression in our Youth & Our Community.”
ArtHaus fulfills its mission by offering programs that enhance visual arts education in public and private schools throughout Volusia counties. This is accomplished by holding art exhibitions onsite in our student art gallery and off site in municipalities and businesses, providing art classes, workshops and outreach programs. We offer art classes for artists of all ages in our facility as well as a gift shop of handmade creations. Students’ hands-on participation in all phases of ArtHaus programs helps build confidence, develop problem solving skills and a lifelong appreciation of the visual arts.
“Instilling th Spirit of Creativity & Self-Expression in our Youth & Community .”