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  • Annual Meeting Tonight! 6-9:30pm

    2013 - 10.06

    Our Annual Meeting for Artisan’s Asylum community members is tonight! Sunday, October 6. Potluck dinner will begin at 6pm, with meeting agenda to begin at 7pm.

    This meeting will be an opportunity both to reflect on the last year and to discuss plans for the upcoming one. We will do our best to make sure all the information discussed is disseminated by email as well, but I do encourage everyone to attend!

    In addition to the financial and operational updates and discussion of board and officer elections, the following proposals will be presented for discussion and feedback:

    • Changes to our membership structure (proposed for January 2014)
    • Short-term additional rental area to expand studio availability
    • Shifting the SCUL Bike Shop to the E&R and Hot Craft Studio shop aisle

    If you are interested in hearing more about these things in person, or in participating in the group discussion, we hope to see you tonight! If you can’t make it, we will send out summaries by email of the issues discussed, and offer venues for contributing your feedback on each topic. You can also always sign up for Molly’s office hours (signup finally available online).






    Somerville Mini Maker Faire Today! 3-7pm, Union Square

    2013 - 10.05

    It’s turning into a beautiful day to spend outdoors, exploring (and perhaps geeking out over) the current projects of our local makers, artists, engineers, and tech startups.

    Come check out everything from a solar boom box to the cutting edge of 3D printing technology to giant Burning Man art projects to civilization being built Mars. Find locally made and upcycled art, craft, and jewelry; find gamer t-shirts (get an Artisan’s Asylum logo printed on your favorite techy shirt!); find full-size swords and daggers made almost entirely of duct tape; you can even find great local maker and STEM programs for your kids!

    And, of course, have the opportunity to meet members, instructors, and staff from the Artisan’s Asylum, find out about upcoming programs, and learn how you too can get started making.

    We look forward to seeing you soon!






    Events: Artisan’s Asylum is Hitting the Streets this Fall!

    2013 - 09.28

    The Asylum has had a relatively quiet summer, as far as public appearances are concerned, but the seasons have changed, we have a new Programs & Marketing Coordinator managing our events, and in September and October we’re doing our best to make up for lost time. So if you’ve missed seeing us on the streets of Somerville, come join us for one of the following events this fall! More details about all the events below.

    1. What the Fluff? Festival: Marshmallow Shooters – Saturday, September 28, 3-7pm (Raindate Sunday)
    2. Tufts Community Day – Sunday, September 29, 11am-3pm
    3. Somerville Mini MakerFaire – Saturday, October 5, 3-7pm (Raindate Sunday)
    4. Artisan’s Asylum Annual Meeting – Sunday, October 6, 6-9pm
    5. Giant Firebird Puppet at Honk Parade – Sunday, October 13, 12-2pm
    6. Power Tools Pumpkin Carving at SomerStreets – Sunday, October 20, 12-4pm

    We’re always looking for additional volunteers to help at our events: preparing materials, sitting at a booth, giving tours, carrying our banner in a parade, or even just taking photos. If you’re interested in helping out at any of the upcoming events, email events@artisansasylum.com. Sign up for our volunteers mailing list by sending an email to volunteers-subscribe@artisansasylum.com to hear about future volunteer opportunities as they arise!

    1. 2013 What the Fluff? Festival – Saturday, September 28, 3-7pm (Raindate Sunday)

    This weekend, Union Square will go crazy for marshmallow fluff, which was invented right here in Somerville by Archibald Query in 1917 — with games, food, music, and fluff everywhere. Artisan’s Asylum has participated in this fine festival since its inception as Somerville’s friendly local arms dealer, distributing mini-marshmallow shooters and bags and bags of marshmallow ammo to the festival-goers.

    Join us Tuesday and Thursday to help prepare and assemble the pvc pipe shooter components, on Saturday to distribute to the eager milita, or just come to the festival to enjoy the food and games! Check out the Facebook Event here.

    2. Tufts Community Day – Sunday, September 29, 11am-3pm

    For the first time this year, Artisan’s Asylum will be participating in Tufts University’s annual Community Day. Four hours of “education, art, and family entertainment”, residents, neighbors and friends are invited to an afternoon of activities and lunch on Tufts campus, all free of charge. Join us at our table to tell community members about available local resources for making, to show off things you make, or teach something!

    Events including lunch will take place on the main academic quad at the top of the hill by Goddard Chapel, Ballou Hall and the statue of Jumbo. Campus map available here. A complimentary shuttle will run from Davis Square (across the street from Somerville Theatre) to the Tufts campus. Davis Square Shuttle Schedule

    3. Somerville Mini MakerFaire – Saturday, October 5, 3-7pm

    In partnership with Maker Media and the Somerville Arts Council, Artisan’s Asylum is hosting the second annual Mini Maker Faire in Union Square, just two weeks away! Last year’s event was a huge success, with hundreds of attendees joining us to check out technology being developed in the greater Boston area by local artists, engineers, hobbyists, tinkerers, and more. Although the event is just around the corner, we are still accepting a few last applications for participants interested in displaying art, tech, relevant services and interactive activities: to register, fill out this form.

    4. Artisan’s Asylum Annual Meeting – Sunday, October 6, 6-9pm

    The Asylum’s Annual Meeting is an opportunity for all the members of our extended community to come together, review the year that has passed and talk about the year to come. Potluck dinner will begin at 6pm, and presentations from staff and board and community discussion will begin at 7pm. Come just to chat and meet people, or to learn more about how the Asylum works! Follow this link to let us know what you’ll be bringing for the potluck.

    5. Giant Firebird Puppet at Honk Parade – Sunday, October 13, 12-2pm

    We’ll be back at the annual Honk Festival of Activist Street Bands Parade this year, this time with a giant Firebird puppet! Two years ago, we brought the dragon head that so proudly watches over our front desk; Ecco Pierce and David Dowling are working hard at this year’s incarnation of Artisan’s Asylum’s spirit animal (if you’d like to help make it possible, they’re running an indiegogo campaign to fund the project). Come join us for the parade from Davis to Harvard Square on Sunday afternoon, October 3, 12-2pm!

    6. Power Tools Pumpkin Carving – Sunday, October 20, 12-4pm

    To wrap up the season, we have our annual appearance at the Somerstreets MonsterMashed Up Festival carving giant pumpkins with power tools! Check out pictures of these incredible 200-lb creations from the last three years on Facebook and Flickr. If you aspire to be a giant power tool pumpkin sculptor yourself, just email events@artisansasylum.com!






    New Fall Class Postings!

    2013 - 09.20

    What an exciting set of classes we have coming up this season!

    And if you’re looking to find something soon, we have just a few seats available in the remaining ten days of September in 3D modeling, sewing, welding, jewelry-making, and glassworking.

    As always, tool training sessions are available for those self-starters who already know what you want to build, are accustomed to working on your own, and just want to learn how to use the tools you need safely. Also, if you haven’t before, I encourage you to follow this link to view our refund and cancellation policies.

    And now, for our full list of upcoming classes: Read the rest of this entry »






    New Staff at Artisan’s Asylum!

    2013 - 09.03

    I’m overjoyed to be able to announce that we have two new staff members joining the Artisan’s Asylum team! Please welcome Jessica Muise, our new Customer Services Coordinator, and Brian Johnson, our new Programs & Marketing Coordinator.

    Here’s a short introduction to each of them:

    Jessica Muise is a rockstar arts administrator, dancer/choreographer, educator, and permaculturalist. Her recent professional experience includes customer service, supplier operations and human resources for the Boston-based e-commerce start-up Wayfair.com, and operations management for the Massachusetts College of Art and Design’s Admissions Office. She has also worked for over five years in administration and development for arts and social justice focused non-profits, including National Choreography Month, Waltham Fields Community Farm and Green Street Studios. She is currently the artistic director of Intimations Dance and co-founder of Our Permaculture Trip, combining the arts and permaculture in education projects for healing and transformation. Jessica also enjoys knitting, walking in the woods with her dog Banjo and not killing plants she can eat. She is thrilled to join the Artisan’s Asylum community, and can’t wait to meet everyone.

    Brian Johnson is excited to bring his event management, organizational, and technological skills to the Artisan’s Asylum. During his 20 years in information technology, he developed a commitment to documentation, education, and organization that has served him equally well in the large-scale event management, social media and marketing, teaching and training, and small business development that has occupied much of his recent years. He has started his own business, worked with local non-profits, managed the IT/IS systems for a division of Sony, been the Community Manager for an indie video game company… and much more. Among other things, Brian enjoys model railroading, building starship bridges, and replicating overly complex movie props. He is very happy to have a job whose commute involves riding his bike. After eight months of involvement with Artisan’s Asylum as a volunteer and member, he is a firm believer in the Asylum community and mission, and can’t wait to use his varied skill set to widen the awareness of the amazing things being accomplished here, and to support the growing community.

    Jess and Brian are both starting this week. Stay tuned for an official introductory meet & greet soon, but in the meantime, please make them welcome as they get oriented!