Building Studios and Community in Tucson: Jeanne Jerousek-McAnich

When Jeanne Jerousek-McAnich arrived in Tucson in 1976 after receiving her MFA in metals from Kent State University, she transformed Tucson into an artist’s haven.  She initially taught design and drawing classes at Pima Community College, but (in a rare and brilliant move) the City of Tucson soon hired her on full-time in the Parks and Recreation Department to teach community classes in jewelry, lapidary, drawing, and painting as well as some youth classes. Given free reign to create new classes and a posh annual budget of $1000-$3000, she soon began purchasing kilns and equipment to teach classes in enameling and casting and expanding the reach of arts programs for Tucson residents.  Under Jeanne’s initiative, Tucson become a mecca for visiting artist workshops. Jeanne recalls, “I found out that Eleanor Moty - one of my favorite artists - was a sabbatical replacement at the University of AZ. I went down there starstruck, asked her to do the first workshop in 1978 on photo-etching. She agreed! Eleanor started a long line of hundreds of visiting artists workshops including Mary Hu, Philip Fike, etc.”

Jeanne began the photography program from scratch, which began as a traditional studio, but has expanded to include digital photography.  As Tucson’s Leisure Program Coordinator, she oversees studios and programs jewelry and lapidary, lampworking and glass casting, photography, ceramics, and drawing/painting. (Up until very recently, Tucson also offered classes in weaving.)  Over the years, she's scraped by with her often meager allotted budget, slowly equipping each studio with state of the art equipment and tools as well as hiring instructors for specific classes.  She also serves as the volunteer workshop coordinator for Arizona Designer Craftsmen and is the author of Chain Making Link by Link (available for purchase through Starr Gems)

Although the glory days of $3000 budgets are long gone, replaced by the current pittance of a budget, Jeanne is still hard at work providing Tucson residents with excellent arts opportunities.  She works with the available resources at hand.  Over the years, students and former instructors donated everything from torches, lapidary equipment, kilns, casting centrifuges, tumblers, and hand tools, which helps keep the studios afloat especially in this troubled economic environment.  Tucson is fortunate to have these amazing studios and luckier still to have an ambassador of the arts in Jeanne Jerousek-McAnich. 

Tags: Jeanne, Jerousek-McAnich, Parks, Recreation, Scrounge, Tucson, and

Views: 216

Replies to This Discussion

Hey thanks, Charity.  I missed much of the back story when I met her three or four years ago.  It's a great program and I was wondering how they fared through the economy.  Good to know about her book.  I'd missed that too!

This look's a truly great program.

RSS

Latest Activity

Brigitte Martin posted a video

GOLD from Crafts Council on Vimeo.

GOLD

A film about jeweller Jacqueline Mina OBE. Mina uses traditional goldsmithing techniques in unorthodox ways. Her extensive technical knowledge allows her the freedom to express her art with her own characteristic contemporary aesthetic without…
53 minutes ago
Brigitte Martin posted blog posts
20 hours ago
GLORIA CARLOS posted a photo

image

New work at gloriacarlos.bigcartel
yesterday
Mark Fenn - Studiofenn joined Nicolette Absil's group
Thumbnail

A New Path: Enameling in the Round

New experiences in enameling, while taking "Enameling in the Round," with Harlan Butt at Peters Valley.See More
yesterday
Gigi Mariani left a comment for Frederique Coomans
"thanks for frinendship :)"
yesterday
Gigi Mariani and Frederique Coomans are now friends
yesterday
Laritza Garcia is now friends with Shalena White, Angela Arteritano and Meghann Sottile
yesterday
Melanie Sweet posted photos
yesterday
Marissa Guthrie posted a photo

Post-Human

A piece illustrating extinction and the chain effect of if one animal goes extinct that the next that had previously depended on that species will also become extinct.2014
yesterday
Melanie Sweet commented on Brigitte Martin's blog post American Art Dealer Helen Drutt English Donates $2 Million Collection to Hermitage
"I have been to the Hermitage, and it is amazing.  It is not, however, an easy place to visit.  An American still cannot roam freely in Russia.  Travel requires special visas, or being part of an organized tour from which you may not…"
yesterday
Melanie Sweet joined Lorena Angulo's group
Thumbnail

Behind the Brooch part 2

I am happy to share with all of you more images of wonderful brooches from artists around the word. I had so many submissions on my first call that I had to create a second part exhibition. This exhibition focuses on a side of the brooch we usually do not pay much attention to: the back side. Our first look is naturally always trained at the front, but when we do take the time to look at the back of a brooch, it will oftentimes reveal a surprising aspect for us, a delightful little secret. With…See More
yesterday
Lucy Louise Derickson left a comment for Rebecca Skeels
"Hi Rebecca, Thanks for the comment. I'm new to Crafthaus and haven't set up my page just yet, but here is my website www.lucyderickson.comI hope to get my page sorted out asap!  Thanks again. :) Lucy  "
yesterday

© 2014   Created by Brigitte Martin.

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service