Learn, Create, and Imagine on National Artist Day!

National Artist Day is a coast-to-coast celebration of the power and joy art brings, and its importance in our lives! This includes art in all its forms — painting, poetry, dance, sculpture, photography, film, music, and more.

Each year, on October 25th, we show our support for artists across the nation; those passionate, creative and mold-breaking individuals who enrich our lives through beauty, give a voice to social issues and movements that impact us all, and who show us the world in a way we might never have imagined.

Discover new artists across a spectrum of creativity, and celebrate the artist in all of us, with crafts and games, compelling documentaries, arts-focused educational resources, and through some of our region’s most loved arts institutions!

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Art Projects, Crafts & Games

Pinka-Perfect Band Game

Grades PreK-2
In this game from Pinkalicious and Peterrific, your child can explore music and sounds by building unique instruments and joining in song with Pinkalicious and her friends!

Nature Art Picture Frames

Grades PreK-3
When is a stick not a stick? When it’s the side to a Nature Art Picture Frame! You can make a simple frame for your masterpieces using sticks and nature items you find outdoors.

Write and Play Found Poetry

Grades PreK-3
Found poetry, often described as the literary equivalent of a collage, is when you take existing words, phrases or passages and re-frame them to create poetry. Help your child play with words and express herself to create found poetry.

Make a Mosaic

Grades K-4
Mosaics are beautiful pictures made from colorful tiles of different shapes and sizes. Help your child make an inspiring piece of art that they can share with family and friends with this mosaic activity for kids.

Family String Puppets

Grades K-4
Make fun string puppets featuring members of your family and then host a family puppet show!

George’s Moving Art Machines Game

Grades K-5
Your child can join George in his workshop to create kinetic art that moves with this online game from Arthur!

Three Ways to Make Art From Rubbish With Nigel Poor | KQED Art School

Grades 6-12
Nigel Poor is a photographer who spends time documenting everyday existence, exploring the meaning of the traces of ourselves that we leave behind. She focuses on ordinary objects and materials, researching what makes an object “worthy of preservation,” in her words. Using this PBS LearningMedia video, try out the three art-making activities inspired by Poor and her artistic process.


Learn More With the Arts

Discover dance, music, visual arts, and theater from around the world with PBS LearningMedia and PBS Kids for Parents. Collections for grades PreK-12 are full of educational resources, hands-on activities and more!

Learn & Grow: Milestones in the Arts

Grades PreK-3
Children are eager and playful creators. The arts help them explore, make sense of their world and express their thoughts, feelings and beliefs. For young children, art experiences should focus on the process. The art process focuses on the experience, not the “right way” to do something; supports safe risk-taking; values “failure” as part of the creative problem-solving process; and results in art that is unique, personal and original. Explore this collection of activities, articles, and PBS KIDS shows for children ages 2-8 from PBS KIDS for Parents.

Artsville

Grades 3-8
Welcome to Artsville, where learning about art takes center stage! Learn dance, drama, music, and visual art concepts by watching fun animations in both English and Spanish with this collection on PBS LearningMedia.

Sound Field

Grades 6-12
Sound Field is hosted by LA Buckner and Nahre Sol, accomplished musicians and music teachers exploring the music theory, production, history and culture behind our favorite songs and musical styles. Pop, classical, rap, jazz, electronic music, folk, country and indigenous music are covered with highlights on the connections between genres in this PBS LearningMedia collection. And check out new videos in the series on their YouTube channel.

KQED Art School

Grades 6-12
Art School is a KQED web video series that introduces contemporary artists who discuss their careers and intentions, then demonstrate hands-on techniques or concepts. The Art School collection on PBS LearningMedia provides resources for learning how to break dance, draw comic strips, create animations, and much more. Empower folks of all ages to engage with contemporary art, and discover new ideas for creativity from a variety of professional artists through this fun and engaging series.

Broadway or Bust

Grades 6-12
Students and coaches participating in the National High School Musical Theater Awards share their experiences of the stage. Learn how to improve skills as a performer, with this collection of resources from Broadway or Bust on PBS LearningMedia. 

If Cities Could Dance

Grades 6-12
If Cities Could Dance is a Webby Award-winning video series featuring dancers from cities across the United States. In this PBS LearningMedia collection, step into the shoes of dancers from across the country who dare to imagine what it would look like if their city could dance.


Learning at Home Programs

Check out the Mountain Lake PBS Learning at Home arts block, every Friday afternoon from 1-3pm! Showcasing visual, performing, musical arts and more, these programs are great for hybrid or distance instruction, and families looking to spend some extra, quality time together.

Friday, October 29

1 PM: Soundscapes: Gretchen Koehler and Daniel Kelly

Local musicians and stunning scenics take centerstage on Soundscapes. The duo of fiddler Gretchen Koehler and pianist Daniel Kelly close out this season of Soundscapes with a lively mix of traditional and original works at the Strand Center Theatre in Plattsburgh, NY.

1:30 PM: Articulate | Walk a Mile With Me

Throughout history and across civilizations, the humble shoe, once mere protection for our tender feet, has evolved new meanings. Today, shoes are signalers of taste and markers of status. They are taking us on fresh paths, integrating new technology to become more sustainable while helping push the boundaries of human performance.

2 PM: La Frontera with Pati Jinich: From Dos Laredos to Mars

Acclaimed chef and James Beard Award-winning host Pati Jinich, travels the US-Mexico border. In Part Two of the series, From Dos Laredos to Mars, Pati travels from Laredo and Nuevo Laredo to Brownsville, Texas. She learns how tight-knit family bonds are an underlying theme connecting everything in the Laredos, and throughout La Frontera.


Mountain Lake PBS Original Programs

Enjoy these local, arts-focused Mountain Lake PBS specials and series all year-round.

SOUNDSCAPES

Local musicians and stunning scenics take centerstage on SOUNDSCAPES. Filmed at the historic Strand Center Theatre in Plattsburgh, NY, SOUNDSCAPES is a showcase of talented artists who call the North Country home. Enjoy a variety of genres ranging from jazz to bluegrass and more all paired with stunning scenic footage of our region. Watch performances from the entire first season online, anytime.

Have an act of your own? Want to get the family band back together? Tell us more and submit your application to perform on the next season of SOUNDSCAPES!

Spotlight: Native American Artistry Series

Spotlight: Native American Artistry Series, produced by Paul Larson, is a multi-part Mountain Lake PBS documentary series. Viewers join Native American artists as they discuss their work, including pottery and painting, the historical relevance of the pieces, and the updating of traditional motifs for modern viewers. Featured artists include Mohawk cradleboard maker Babe Hemlock, Mohawk pottery artist Natasha Smoke Santiago, Mohawk storyteller Kay Olan, and Seneca basket maker Penelope Minner, amongst others. The whole series can be viewed anytime, online.

A Spotlight Special: Jean Arthur’s Birthplace Celebrates the Star

A Spotlight Special: Jean Arthur’s Birthplace Celebrates the Star showcases the creation of an outdoor mural in downtown Plattsburgh, coordinated by Outside Art: The Plattsburgh Public Art Project. It depicts local native Jean Arthur, star of some of the greatest films of Hollywood’s Golden Age, such as Mr. Smith Goes to Washington and Shane.

The special documents the painting process of Plattsburgh native Brendon Palmer-Angell, and features Jean Arthur’s biographer, John Oller, speaking about the earliest years of Arthur’s life in Plattsburgh, as detailed in his book Jean Arthur: The Actress Nobody Knew. And, to find out more on what else Outside Art has been up to, visit their Facebook Page.

Spotlight: Experience the Art of Francois Escalmel Up Close

François Escalmel has achieved success in Montreal, Germany and Italy with his surrealistic paintings. Not content to merely return to a proven formula, the artist has also produced abstract images, and photographic works where he shrinks himself to fit into miniature worlds of his own creation. Paul Larson shines the Spotlight on this prolific innovator in Experience the Art of Francois Escalmel Up Close.

Escalmel is also a filmmaker, having produced a documentary about American figurative artist Jerome Witkin.  Learn more about the documentary film, Jerome Witkin: Looking at My Century.


Local & Regional Arts Organizations

Learn and create with a variety of North Country museums, galleries, and arts and cultural centers!

Plattsburgh State Art Museum

Located on SUNY Plattsburgh’s campus, the Plattsburgh State Art Museum features several permanent collections of western and non-western art, ranging from ancient to contemporary, displayed within their main galleries, an evolving outdoor sculpture park, and exhibition areas throughout the campus. The museum also houses an expansive collection of artworks from famed regional artist, Rockwell Kent, including paintings prints, drawings, dinnerware, books, photographs and more. For more information on current exhibits and other offerings, visit the museum’s Facebook page.

Adirondack Center for Writing

The Adirondack Center for Writing brings people and words together. The ACW cultivates the art of writing and the joy of reading; celebrate the power of language to invite discovery, to create an understanding of people and sense of place, and to build a community. Check out what’s new and newsworthy, join a writer’s group to hone your literary chops, or visit them each weekday afternoon for drop-in reading, writing, and community time at their new Saranac Lake location!

The Hyde Collection

The Hyde Collection combines the intimacy of an historic house with the sophistication of a larger art museum complex. One of the northeast’s exceptional small art museums, four galleries offer a changing schedule of world-class exhibitions, featuring distinguished collections of European and American art. The Hyde offers significant national and international exhibitions, and a packed schedule of events that help visitors to experience art in new ways. Online, visit The Hyde’s Museum Blog where they share the latest art news, curator’s thoughts, and virtual tours from around the world. If you have a young artist in your midst, be sure to check out The Hyde’s Family Programs and Artful Afternoons on their YouTube channel.

Stone Ledge Sculpture Garden

The Stone Ledge Sculpture Garden, located just south of Plattsburgh, NY on US Route 9, is hard to miss with its large-scale metal and wooden sculptures sited across the sprawling lawn. Created by Jackie and Dick Sabourin in 1994, the garden offers an opportunity for locals and tourists alike to breathe the fresh air and take in impressive works of art. And, it’s free and open to the public year-round! The collection features many works by sculptor John Kokoszka, which pay homage to a variety of notable moments in world and art history, such as Francisco Jose de Goya y Lucientes’ famous painting “El tres de mayo de 1808 en Madrid.”

Strand Center for the Arts

An active Arts Center and historic Theatre in downtown Plattsburgh, NY, the Strand Center for the Arts offers rich cultural experiences and arts education for all ages and skill levels in the visual arts, clay, music, dance, literary arts, and more. Year-round gallery exhibitions, artisan markets, and community events draw folks from across the North Country and beyond. The Strand Center Theatre, originally built as a Vaudeville theatre in 1924 and now on the National Register of Historic Places, hosts a variety of theatrical, film, and musical performances. For more information, check out the StrandsFacebook page.

Lake Placid Center for the Arts

The Lake Placid Center for the Arts is a year-round performing and visual arts facility.  Located in the Adirondack Park of Northern New York, the LPCA presents music, dance and theatre performances, film exhibitions and visual arts presentations. The Arts Center also provides arts classes, workshops, and residencies for aspiring and renowned artists. LPCA offers a range of virtual experiences, from live art classes to line dance, independent film rentals and more. For more information on the LPCA, visit their Facebook page.

Traditional Arts in Upstate New York

Traditional Arts in Upstate New York (TAUNY) is dedicated to showcasing the folk culture and living traditions of New York’s North Country. This includes diverse customs and traditions ⎯ like storytelling, music, crafts, foodways, and folk art ⎯ that make life special in our region, from the St. Lawrence River to the Adirondack Mountains. Take in exhibitions at the TAUNY Center and North Country Folkstore, or get involved in making some art of your own with one of the many community-driven research projects TAUNY hosts.