Rick Whelan

6th Annual MAD Celebration of the Arts Will Be Held Throughout August in Kingston

— Events Feature commUNITY Clay Project, Free Art Classes at The D.R.A.W. Studio at New MAD Location at Energy Square —

KINGSTON, N.Y. (August 1, 2020) — In 2020, the 6th Annual MAD Celebration of the Arts has been radically altered due to the restrictions of COVID-19. 

Last year, Kingston came together as a community for a daylong gathering of art making. This year, MAD invites the Kingston community to participate in a month-long (CDC-compliant) MAD Celebration of the Arts! Everyone can participate in public places or at home, because—drum roll please—MAD has a brand new office and The D.R.A.W. has a beautiful new studio space at 20 Cedar Street at Energy Square!

The commUNITY Clay Project and a month of free art classes for youth at The D.R.A.W. studio will be held at the new MAD location.

Celebrate the arts (in a safe, socially-distanced way) this August – come join us!

commUNITY Clay Project

Great art is made when many hands work together. – Susan Whelan

Our project was inspired by Antony Gormley’s dramatic installation, “Field for the British Isles.”

Unlike Gormley’s installation where 100 volunteers created 40,000 figures, our project will be made from many hands and each figure will be unique. The clay will be a red brick color, a nod to Kingston’s historic history as a brick-making center.

Come Get Creative with Us!

Everyone who wants to be a part of this exciting community art project can either attend a Weekend Workshop or Pick Up a small bag of clay and instructions and make it at home. This is a great project for church/school groups, families, friends, social clubs, businesses, organizations and, well, everyone!

You can join the creative fun in two ways – at onsite Clay Days at MAD in The D.R.A.W. Studio (where we will adhere to all CDC and NYS Department of Health requirements) or pick up your clay and bring your clay figure(s) back when done!

There are only three rules to follow:
• Must be hand-sized
• Must stand up
• Must have a face!

2 Ways to Participate 

1. WEEKEND WORKSHOPS at The D.R.A.W. Directions

Saturdays, August 1, 15 & 29, 10am-2pm
Sundays, August 9 & 23, 10am-2pm

Watch a demonstration and have an opportunity to create your commUNITY figure in our new studio space at Energy Square. Following COVID-19 guidelines, only six unrelated participants will be allowed in at a time and your temperature will be taken. Masks are required and available.

2. PICK-UP / DROP-OFF ONLY Make your figure offsite.

You can pick up clay for you, and your group if you need more, at these locations:

MAD in the 20 Cedar Street Lobby, Mon-Thurs, 10am-2pm and during Weekend Workshops Directions
Kingston Ceramic Studio at 77 Cornell Street on the 3rd Floor (Shirt Factory) Daily, 9am-7pm Directions

When your clay figure is completed, just drop it off at one of these locations so it can be fired at Bailey Pottery.

Clay figures will not be returned but will become part of a bigger project representing all of us: The commUNITY display will be on public view at the MAD Fishbowl at 20 Cedar Street.

It takes only about five minutes to make a clay figure so people of all ages and abilities can participate. Watch this video to see how easy, fast and fun it is to make a clay figure!

The installation of clay figures will be assembled throughout August in the MAD Fishbowl at 20 Cedar Street.

This project is made possible with the support of Bailey Pottery Equipment and Ceramic Supply.

Do you want to support this project with your time and energy? We seek volunteers! Contact

These community partners – Mountain Valley Manor, The ARC/Cornell Creative Art Center, NE Center for Rehabilitation & Brain Injury – are creating clay figures. If your organization wants to participate, please contact Susan Whelan by email to request clay pugs and learn more.

FREE Art Classes

August Art Workshops & Youth Art Lab

Where: The D.R.A.W. Studio at Energy Square, 20 Cedar Street in Midtown Kingston
When: August 3-28, 2020

  • Pre-registration is required. Class size is limited to 6 to accommodate social distancing.
  • *Free* tuition to sign up for the first session/workshop; waitlist for additional offerings.
  • NYS & CDC Best Practices will be required at all times.
  • Find more info (including middle school course descriptions) and register at

In partnership with the YMCA, The Kingston Library and Arts Mid-Hudson.

4-Day Art Workshops

For all City of Kingston youth in
Grades 2 – 3 and Grades 4 – 5

Weekly Workshops August 3 – 28
Monday – Thursday
9:30am – 12:30pm

Sessions for Grades 2 – 3:
9:30am – 10:30am (1hr)
Sessions for Grades 4 – 5:
11:00am – 12:30pm (1.5hr)

Register here

Youth Art Lab at The D.R.A.W.

For all City of Kingston youth in
Grades 6 – 8

August 3 – 28
Monday – Thursday
1 – 3pm

August 3 – 6  •  Annie Dwyer
Zines and Comics

August 10 – 13 •  Alekz Pacheco
Digital Photography – Everyday Kingston

August 17 – 20 •  Lara Giordano
Drawing Experience

August 24– 27 •  Felix Olivieri
DIY Animation; Character and Story Building

Register here

This project is made possible with funds from the Decentralization Program, a regrant program of the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew Cuomo and the New York State Legislature and administered by Arts Mid-Hudson.

For more information about the 6th Annual MAD Celebration of the Arts, please send an email to


Kingston Midtown Arts District (MAD)

Since its inception in 2013, MAD is aiming to unite, revitalize and enrich Kingston through the arts. MAD is building upon the City’s reputation as an arts-friendly place in which to live, work and play. More than 400 artists and arts enterprises are operating in Midtown to ensure inclusive and equitable community development and economic revitalization for everyone living and working in Midtown. The Dept. of Regional Arts Workers (The D.R.A.W.), a growing community of artists, educators, entrepreneurs and students, provides arts programming and workforce training to the City of Kingston under the MAD organizational umbrella. To learn more about MAD, please return to our home page and explore the rest of our website.

Contact Rick Whelan for artwork, logo and images: call/text 914-523-5341 or reach out with email.