Local Women: Cathrine Babcock
Occupation: Executive Director, Lansing Art Gallery
Residence: Grand Ledge
Family: Husband, Dave Babcock; sons, Jon and Matt; grandchildren, Sydney and Andrew
Hobbies: Sculptor, bird watcher, painter and motorcycle enthusiast
Catherine Babcock, Executive Director of the Lansing Art Gallery, loves art and she wants you to as well. Currently celebrating its 48th year of existence, the Lansing Art Gallery was created by artists and educators to promote Michigan art; it does this through exhibitions, gallery shops and art education courses. For more information, visit: www.lansingartgallery.org
Q: How did you get involved with the Lansing Art Gallery?
A: I started off as a volunteer teaching art classes for the gallery. An education outreach position opened up so I applied and then 18 months later I became the director. I have been directing since 1998. Simply put, I have a passion for art education. As a teacher you can affect a classroom full of kids and that’s great, but through being an administrator and organizing multiple classes, I can reach hundreds and make a large impact.
I also really like working with young people; I want to play a part in their first impressions about art and introduce it to those who may not know anything about it — that’s really exciting.
Q: Do you ever create your own art?
A: Yes, I like to make sculptures, draw and paint. My go-to subjects tend to be ones that are breathing — people. I enjoy depicting the human form; it does not matter to me if they are clothed, nude, or if I am doing a portrait. I don’t know why, but you get bit by that bug and it just doesn’t go away.
Q: Can you tell us more about the art education program?
A: We provide on and off-site education at our gallery as well as at local schools. These programs are special because they are taught by professional artists from Michigan; we have a very strong relationship with them. Also, for example, if the artist creates clay sculptures, the class that they instruct specifically covers clay works. This holds true to other mediums as well, like painting, drawing, etc. This gives participants insightful information that concerns exactly what they are interested in.
Tags: art, lansing, lansing art gallery, Local Women