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Studio labs open to youth

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — Art and youth — it’s a combination that Warehouse 508 by NMX is exploring.

Warehouse 508, in collaboration with the Community Project, has been hosting a five-month series of open studio labs and featured artist workshops for Albuquerque youth.

The events are called “Xpression Sessions” and are aimed at empowering young people to create, learn and express themselves through art in a safe, inspiring and educational environment.

“With each session, we’ve had about 30-40 students,” says Noah Kessler de St Croix, a creative artist with the program. “It’s given youth the opportunity to get inside and get some insight from some established artists. It’s a wonderful program and we are continuing to grow.”

The next event will be held at 5 p.m. Friday, April 26 at Warehouse 508, 508 First NW. “Xpression Sessions” workshops begin with a conceptualizing and visioning process. Short demonstration workshops will be offered at the beginning of the session in which techniques on drawing, painting, spray painting, photography, collage, stretching canvas and other three-dimensional art techniques will be introduced.

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Kessler de St Croix says the goal is community development and creating a space to support the cycle of educating youth and providing an opportunity for local artists to share their art and skills with the community.

“Anybody under the age of 21 can come and it’s open to all youths,” he says. “We’ve even had some people from the youth houses and homeless shelters. It’s about giving them an outlet to be creative.”

The program is held on the second and the fourth Friday of each month through June. Featured artists include James Black, Albert Rosales, Kailani, Al’ Nair, Johnpaul Gutierrez, Rey Melendez and Kessler St Croix.

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