Renovations on Gougler

Maria Nann

Kent State senior’s vision becomes reality at the newly renovated Studio 425 in Kent

If you’ve been there before, you wouldn’t recognize it now, Ken Carter said, laughing.

“We’re trying to turn the space around,” he said of Studio 425, a venue for local artists and Kent State students, located at 425 Gougler Ave.

Carter, senior crafts major, has been in charge of renovating the downtown Kent studio. The project was sparked when he realized he needed a place to have his senior show, he said. He has been working on the project for about three months, putting in brand new walls and a ceiling.

“Since I put so much time and energy into it,” he said, “we decided to keep it. I had a vision, and I just did it.”

Studio 425, which has been used as a working space for local artists and students for the past 20 years, is still providing working space and now a venue for galleries and shows. There are five studios in the building, and nine resident artists rent the space. Four of these artists are Kent State students.

Studio 425 Upcoming Events

• May 5-12, “New Glass” – A showcase of the work that Kent State students in the Advanced Glass program have made during the spring semester. Reception held Thursday, May 8.

• May 19-30, “New Paintings: Rachel Jernigan” – A solo exhibit of former Studio 425 resident artist and local painter Rachel Jernigan’s recent work. Select works will be for sale. Reception TBA.

• June 2-13, “The Artists @ 425” – Studio 425 resident artist Mike Neeson will be showing his own recent sculpture and painting along with other local artists. Reception TBA.

• June 16-27, “Roy Einar Glad Nedreberg Jr.: A Retrospective” – On display will be numerous paintings be local area artist Roy Einer Glad Nedreberg Jr., who passed away February 13, 2008. Reception/Memorial TBA.

Michael England, senior fine arts major, said he heard about the space through some friends and has been renting studio space from Studio 425 for nearly a year and a half.

“I’m having my senior show on campus,” England said, “but we’ve had shows there that I’ve been a part of.”

Two weeks ago, during the first show held in the newly renovated studio, Carter said they had 50 people sign up for their mailing list.

“Everybody was really happy that there was a new place in Kent to show art,” he said. “There wasn’t enough. There’s never enough.”

The goal, Carter said, is to eventually turn the studio into a nonprofit organization. He said there is talk about getting grants in the future, but for right now, he is paying for the renovations out of his own pocket.

“A month later and over 3,000$ later,” he laughed, “it all worked out.”

Carter, also the studio’s gallery director, is in charge of booking shows and setting up the calendar.

“That’s all the place needed, basically,” he said. “Someone to organize.”

For some shows in the future, Carter said the artwork and paintings will be for sale, but all that money will go to the artist.

“We have nothing to do with that,” he explained. “We basically provide a venue.”

For information on the studio, contact Carter at [email protected].

Contact features correspondent Maria Nann at [email protected].