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Lower East Side Art School Hosts Open House

By Patrick Hedlund | June 15, 2011 5:12pm | Updated on June 16, 2011 7:07am

By Patrick Hedlund

DNAinfo News Editor

LOWER EAST SIDE — The Educational Alliance hosted an open house Tuesday to promote its summer art program, encouraging would-be students to tour the art school and register for courses in subjects as varied as stone-carving and welding.

The community-based nonprofit organization, which offers services ranging from preschool to addiction recovery, currently has roughly 400 students enrolled in its East Broadway art school.

Courses at the Educational Alliance include painting and drawing, sculpture, ceramics, photography and collage, for a fraction of the cost charged other well-known institutions throughout the city.

"We really stressed and really worked hard to keep it affordable," said Walter O'Neill, director of the art school. "In some cases, the same teacher teaching here is also teaching at the 92nd Street Y."

The Educational Alliance's more unique classes have even attracted established artists, like Lower East Side crochet sculptor Olek, who offered to teach a class in crocheting in exchange for welding lessons.

"We've grown and grown each year," O'Neill noted. "People who take classes really want to learn something. It's not just self-expression."

The classes, which begin June 20, cost anywhere between $150 and $295 for six to eight sessions. The Educational Alliance is located at 197 E. Broadway, or visit edalliance.org/artschool.

Works on display in the art school's painting studio.
Works on display in the art school's painting studio.
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DNAinfo/Patrick Hedlund