A location nestled in the dunes of Truro and within walking distance to Cape Cod Bay that provides an inspirational and meditative backdrop that enhances the workshop experience.
A distinguished faculty that consists of prominent artists in the fields of painting, photography, printmaking, sculpture, ceramics, photography, jewelry and writing.
A student body that consists of both working artists and art students who hail from all over the USA and Canada. Truro Center for the Art ~ Celebrating over 45 years of Art.
A sweeping overlook of the original Castle Hill campus, taken with a drone camera by David A. Cox
Truro Center for the Arts at Castle Hill has served a single purpose for more than 45 years: to create an inclusive and supportive arts community by providing a wide range of artistic experiences to students at all levels of ability. Energized by a faculty of distinguished artists and writers and enlivened by a welcoming and engaging community, Castle Hill offers workshops, lectures, exhibitions, performances, special events and short-term artist residencies. Located in an exquisitely beautiful rural setting, Castle Hill provides unique and inspiring learning experiences to all who come here.
A Letter from the
Executive Artistic Director
A Letter from the
Executive Artistic Director
I am very excited to start the 47th year of Castle Hill with so much to look forward to! Over two years ago, we purchased the beautiful Edgewood Farm and have spent significant time renovating, restoring, and improving the three historic buildings on the property. This past year, we offered housing to students for the first time and began an Artist Residency Program at Edgewood Farm. This was one of our major goals in purchasing the iconic property.
We have an incredible line-up of faculty joining us this year, including Judy Pfaff, Joan Snyder, Laylah Ali, Dan Welden, M P Landis, Deborah Dancy, Jeff Shapiro, Robert Pinsky, and hundreds of others! Our 2018 Woody English Distinguished Artist and Writers Chair is Mark Dion. Dion’s work undoubtedly changes the way you look at the world. The job of the artist, he says, is to go against the grain of dominant culture, to challenge perception and convention—and that, Mark certainly does. In addition to teaching a workshop, Dion will also present a lecture on the 7th of August.
Throughout this year, we will continue to bring the ‘Farm’ back to Edgewood Farm. We will be offering a community garden opportunity again for anyone who dreams of growing their own food and is searching for a plot. This spring, we will hold a variety of culinary workshops, from Italian to Indian cooking, to fermenting, coffee roasting, pie-making, and more! All of this will lead up to our first ever Food Symposium, featuring Ruth Reichl, “Doc” Willoughby, Francis Lam, Barry Estabrook, Michael Ruhlman, and Bill Sertl from June 9th-10th with a culminating Farm to Table Dinner (keep your eye out for this!). There is truly something for everyone.
We invite you to come and be part of the Castle Hill community in 2018. We welcome all, from 6 to 96 years old (and beyond!). We are diverse, we are professional, we are creative, and most of all, we are fun!
With warm regards,
Executive Artistic Director
A Letter from the Board Presidents
A Letter from the Board Presidents
Truro Center for the Arts at Castle Hill is a destination where journeys begin. Everyone is welcome to join, beginning or continuing an artistic exploration of new possibilities. Castle Hill opens doors to a whole range of opportunities, offering a great variety of artistic practices, sensibilities, traditions, aesthetic perspectives, mediums ancient and new that can certainly make one's life more interesting and rewarding. The Arts have the power to ignite creative energy. Making art in all of its forms sparks curiosity when one question leads to the next. It powers the imagination and drives ambition. The process is exhilarating!
At Castle Hill personal journeys can begin by enrolling in a workshop, visiting an exhibition, writing, listening, or attending social events and being part of the wonderful diverse community that believes that the Arts are essential to all of us. Truro Center For the Arts' mission is to offer creative experiences that are transformative.
Tina (Elsa) Tarantal, Board Co-President
Nancy Rahnasto Osborne, Board Co-President
by Joyce Johnson
In 1971 Truro Center for the Arts at Castle Hill was taking its first tentative steps toward becoming a successful art center. And tentative was the word. There was no money, just a wonderful old New England barn that had cried out for years to be converted to an art center. Eventually the cry was heard by a group of people who wanted just that. The alternative would have been fateful for the Snow's Stables, over a century old and once the hub of community activity. Built around 1882, it was used by Charles W. Snow for multiple purposes, including keeping a team of horses, storing equipment for his building trade, and serving as a retail paint store. He also rented sections to ever-changing tenants.
Contractor Peter Brown, who bought the property in the 1960s, told a group of people who first assembled to discuss the barn's future that if artists were not interested in using the space as studios or for a school, he would demolish the building and use the lot for another purpose.
I attended that meeting of a handful of artists and craftsmen in August 1971. It was organized by the late Harry Hollander, who wanted a place to teach his specialty, working in plastics. Those who met at the home of craftsman Albert Kaufman were indeed very interested in the availability of studio space, even creating an art center. But without funds, and no one offering to produce them, the meeting ended without resolve, except thatBrown was encouraged enough by the group's interest to move forward with renovations to stabilize the building, with the hope of renting sections as artists' studios.
For five years I had been running the Nauset School of Sculpture at my studio in North Eastham. Several weeks after the meeting, Hollander found me at my Truro home. Someone had pointed the general direction of my isolated homestead in a kettle pot and he arrived, tramping through a swamp and brambles, having missed the dirt road leading in. He suggested that I move my school to the barn and add a few diverse workshops to the program, including his particular workshop on plastic techniques. He urged me to take a look at what Brown was doing to renovate and repair the barn-adding windows for north light and reconstructing floors and walls to convert the barn into seven individual studios.
I followed the suggestion the next day and when I saw the new space, any questions and concerns faded away. If nothing else, I decided to rent the spacious main studio for my sculpture school, convinced my luck for running the school in Eastham during rainless summers in a grove of pine trees without shelter would soon run out. Doris Harris, a ceramics teacher from Binghamton, New York, with a summer home in Wellfleet, had been a student in my school for several years and became very interested in the idea of a summer school in Truro also. She agreed to set up a ceramic department, a major start for a summer craft program. We told Brown we wanted to rent another room. Then we asked for two more as other artists and craftspeople expressed interest in teaching.
The first official meeting of a steering committee occurred in my Eastham home. It included Rigmor Holbrook Plezner and George Zilliac, both of Orleans, and myself. Eleanor Meldahl of Truro was invited but unable to attend. We decided to move forward. My sculpture school mailing list of about 200 people and a barrage of news releases began to inform people that an art center would be opening in late June close to the picturesque Pamet River in Truro. The news was well-received.
Funding was still an issue. I said I would work on the project without recompense until we saw what might happen. Brown said he would postpone the date to receive rent until June, a significant reprieve. And I borrowed $250 on my newly acquired Master Charge card-all that was needed to get out the first one-page brochure describing 15 workshops.
Teachers agreed that the Center would not be obligated to run a workshop if the number of students needed to break even was not reached. The list of instructors was small but, in retrospect, formidable. Among them wereRobert Vickrey, an internationally known egg tempera specialist who lives in Orleans, and New York sculptor Sidney Simon who has a summer home in Truro. Printmaker Jan Gelb of Provincetown agreed to teach, along with New Hampshire weaver Mary Bishop and Orleans poet Thomas Whitbread. Orleans printmaker Marcia Howe would teach experimental printmaking and Hollander, who lived year-round in Truro, would teach jewelry-making with plastics. His wife, Ruth, and Harris would comprise the ceramics department.
The Center had approached Dan Klubock, a Boston lawyer, to begin applying for non-profit status, which was finally certified a year or so later. He also counseled me, in the initial stages during the fall of 1971, to squelch a move by several residents of Castle Road to stop the Center. Since schools are allowed in residential areas, the attempt was groundless and thankfully faded away. We, of course, had no idea whether the Center would succeed. I was prepared to lose no more than $2000 that first summer. As it worked out, we made a "profit" of about that much, some of which was paid me as salary. We need not have feared. The response to Castle Hill was steady and enthusiastic. Volunteers began to surface. Many, such as Ella Jackson, Mary Lou Friedman and Eleanor Meldahl, are still working to keep the center afloat with fundraising and promotional efforts and of course there were Doris and Chet Harris, without whom there would never have been a ceramic department. The economic reality was that even with so many volunteers, tuition still covered only about half of the operating costs. A board of trustees to help with fundraising was critical and soon came together.
Truro proved to be the ideal location. The town had no center for artists and writers. All ages were soon attracted to Castle Hill as though there were a magnet hidden among the barn's weathered beams. Some came to learn, others to teach or to fold flyers and stick labels on them. Others came to meet others-to feel a part of a worthwhile project.
Josiah Child, a retired Boston architect, had recently bought a home in Truro just up the hill from the Center. As a board member, he saw its potential and invited Louise Tate, the director of the newly-formed Massachusetts Council for the Arts, to see Castle Hill in the early fall, after the first summer. She liked what she saw and gave the Center its first grant, $5000 for administrative salaries, which was repeated a second year. By the end of the first trial summer we were renting five of the seven studios. A year later we took over the entire barn and tower, which had become the Center's administrative offices.
The next eight years were thrilling and exhausting. Each summer the enrollment increased at least 10 percent. The evenings as well as the days were filled with classes and events. A lecture and concert series drew crowds of over 100 people. In a few years the number of classes rose to over 40 offerings, among them a series of writing courses. Courses on nature were added, such as experimenting with natural dyes with Cape Cod National Seashore naturalist Hal Hinds. Dr. Graham Giese and Barbara and Charles "Stormy" Mayo taught coastal ecology and sea life and were excited enough by the response to start their own school the next year-the Center for Coastal Studies, which is now nationally acclaimed for its whale research.
Some of the most exciting workshops in those early days centered on the ceramic department, with ceramicist Mikhail Zakin acting as the Pied Piper of clay. She led students to discover over 12 natural clays at local beaches, most low-fire, but a few high-fire. They experimented with the clays and one summer built a wood-fired kiln in the back area, staying up for 24 hours to feed the straw and clay hulk filled with hand-crafted pots. Primitive pit firing was another course that attracted large classes.
The success of the Center was not without its down moments. Harris, on Memorial Weekend just before our anticipated opening in late June 1972, complained of a backache and went home to Binghamton to see her doctor. Within a short time she was diagnosed with cancer. She taught only one day at the Center and passed away the next spring, leaving a gaping hole in our program and dreams. She and her husband had completely outfitted the ceramic department with its sturdy tables, secondhand metal stools, deck, and kick wheels lovingly designed and constructed for the program.
In 1975, with only three years under our belt, Brown said he intended to sell the property and offered it to the fledgling board at a generously low price. A yearlong fundraising effort produced the down payment and we became landowners, filled with both excitement and anxiety.
The need for a strong board became clear if the Center was to honor its new obligations in maintaining the two buildings and the grounds. Friedman, a summer resident, agreed to become president of the board for a year and was succeeded by comic strip creator Lee Falk, who also had a summer home in Truro. He instituted a financial plan that has kept the Center in the black for almost two decades, giving subsequent presidents freedom to address the many other challenges that have arisen since Castle Hill's infancy.
Joyce Johnson, a writer and sculptor, was the founder of Castle Hill, president for six years, and director for eight years. This story was printed in Provincetown Arts magazine.
Board of Directors
Board of Directors
Nancy Rahnasto Osborne
Elsa (Tina) Tarantal
David Grayson, Treasurer
Peter Sullivan, Finance Chair
Marianne A. Kinzer, Recording Secretary
Ellyn Weiss , Corresponding Secretary
Robert Jackson, Past President
Anna Poor David Perry Diane Rice
Steve Tarantal Gail Wynne
Barbara Baker Kristina Bird
Susan Reid Danton
Tim Dickey Joseph Fiorello
Mary Ann O'Loughlin
Peter Saunders Melissa Sherer
Joan Lebold Cohen
Mark Dion was born in New Bedford, Mass., in 1961. He received a B.F.A. (1986) and an honorary doctorate (2003) from the University of Hartford, Hartford Art School, in Connecticut. He also attended the School of Visual Arts in New York, the prestigious Whitney Museum of American Art’s Independent Study Program, and is an Honorary Fellow of Falmouth University in the United Kingdom (2014).
Judy Pfaff was born in London, England, in 1946. She received a BFA from Washington University, Saint Louis (1971), and an MFA from Yale University (1973). Recipient of Academy Member Fellowship, American Academy of Arts & Sciences (2013); Anonymous Was A Woman Award (2013); MacArthur Fellowship (2004); Guggenheim Fellowship (1983); National Endowment for the Arts grants (1979, 1986). Pfaff is a member of the American Academy of Arts and Letters and has had numerous solo exhibitions and group shows in major galleries and museums in the United States and abroad. Her commissions include Pennsylvania Convention Center Public Arts Projects, Philadelphia; large-scale site-specific sculpture, GTE Corporation, Irving, Texas; installation: vernacular abstraction, Wacoal, Tokyo, Japan; and set design, Brooklyn Academy of Music. She has work in permanent collections of the Museum of Modern Art; Whitney Museum of American Art; Brooklyn Museum of Art; Detroit Institute of Arts; others. She was the Milton Avery Distinguished Professor of Art, Bard College (1989, 1991).
Carla Kaplan has published two New York Times Notable biographies, as well five other books, and dozens of non-fiction essays. She has taught writing for 30 years, founded an arts & humanities center at Northeastern University (where she holds the Davis Distinguished Professorship of American Literature), a symposium on The Future of Life Story, and been a resident fellow at numerous centers, including the Cullman Center for Scholars & Writers of the New York Public Library. The recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship and, most recently, a “Public Scholar” fellowship from the NEH, Kaplan’s non-fiction is noted for bringing rich scholarship to broad audiences. Her cultural biography of muckraking activist, and former British aristocrat, Jessica Mitford is forthcoming from HarperCollins. She lives in Wellfleet, Eastham, and Jamaica Plain.
Dan Welden is the original pioneer of alternative printmaking and Solarplate. He is co-author of "Printmaking in the Sun" and has worked professionally in 53 countries. In 2016 he received a ‘lifetime achievement’ award from A/E Foundation, NY. He has had 84 solo exhibitions including his recent show at The Cape Cod Museum of Art. He has also been awarded Professor Emeritus at the Escuela de Beas Artes in Cusco, Peru.
Laura Frazure is an Assistant Professor at the University of the Arts in Philadelphia where she
teaches in the Fine Arts and Core Studies departments. She has most recently been a Visiting
Professor of Anatomy and Visiting Artist at the Central Academy of Fine Art in Beijing and
Tianjin Academy of Fine Art in Tianjin, China. Her sculptural practice focuses on the figure,
creating theatrical works modeled directly in microcrystalline wax, bees wax, plaster and also
through digital media.
M P Landis has been working in various visual media since childhood. In 1989 he moved to Provincetown, MA to concentrate on painting and began exhibiting almost immediately in galleries there. In 1996 he was awarded a solo exhibition at the Provincetown Art Association and Museum. Soon after he moved to Brooklyn, NY where he lived and worked until 2015 when he and his family moved to Portland, Maine. Since 1990 he has been in over 30 solo exhibitions and many two-person and group exhibits. His work is included in many public and private collections.
We are very excited to announce that we now have limited housing available at Edgewood Farm for students who are taking workshops at Castle Hill. Click below for more information:
Cape Air flies from Terminal C, Gate 33 at Boston's Logan Airport direct to Provincetown Airport at Race Point. The 25-minute flight is beautiful in clear weather. Call (800) 352-0714 or (508) 771-6944 for information, or go to www.flycapeair.com.
Regular bus service from New York, Boston and Providence. For information, call (508) 771-6191, or (508) 746-4795 or go to www.p-b.com.
Truro is very close to the extreme tip of Cape Cod (one town before). Driving time from Boston is about two and a half hours, from New York about six hours. Follow the directions below by car.
This Summer the Cape Cod Regional Authority will run what is called the “Flex Route”. It will serve Provincetown, Truro, Wellfleet, Eastham, Orleans, Brewster and Harwich. To find out how to get to Castle Hill and get the times call: 1-800-352-7155 or go to: www.theflex.org for the schedule.
Route 6 to Truro Center Exit/ Pamet Road - Look for the Sign (above). Take right at the end of ramp, another right and a right after going under the bridge. Follow road past Jam’s Grocery and Post Office. Take the first left past Post Office (about 200 ft) this is CASTLE ROAD. Proceed 1 mile. You come to a triangle intersection - take quick short right . The tower is in front of you - the roads that intersect are Castle Road and Meetinghouse Road.
Route 6 - Past Hillside Farms, Bayberry Nursery. Take first RIGHT after Shady Rest Cottages. At split take sharp right. Proceed up the hill. At top of hill - take the middle road in front of you (Meetinghouse Road). At the bottom of the hill the tower is on the right.
Frequently Asked Questions
Frequently Asked Questions
How do I get to Castle Hill?
Castle Hill's main campus is located near the center of Truro. From Route 6 (heading east towards Provincetown), take the exit to Pamet Roads/Truro Center. Keep right until you go under the bridge, and take another right at the stop sign. Pass the post office on the left, and take your following left onto Castle Road. Stay right at the next fork, and go across the street into Castle Hill's Parking lot. You'll see the tower!
From Route 6 (west) , pass Hillside Farm/Box Lunch on the right, take the following right onto Castle Road - Follow the sign for Corn Hill Beach! Stay left at the next 2 intersections and Castle Hill's parking lot will be on your left.
Where is Edgewood Farm?
Edgewood Farm is located across Rte 6 from Castle Hill, at 3 Edgewood Way. For more info, CLICK HERE!
Is Castle Hill open to the public?
We are open to the public Monday-Friday, 9am-5pm. You are welcome to visit the Gallery and our workshop spaces - we only ask that you do not disturb workshops while they are in session. Stop by the office (the Tower building at the front of campus) for information or a quick tour.
Do you have a Gallery space?
Yes! We have rotating exhibitions throughout the year, featuring Castle Hill instructors, members, and artists in the local community. Check the Gallery section of our Events page to see current and upcoming gallery exhibitions.
Do you have Events in the summer?
We sure do! Visit our Events page for all upcoming events.
How do I register for a workshop?
The easiest way to register for a workshop is right here on our website! Visit our Workshops page to view all of our upcoming workshops. Click "Add to Cart," then click the black shopping cart icon in the top right corner to complete registration.
I'm having trouble registering online.
No problem - we are happy to help! Contact the Castle Hill office at (508) 349-7511 or email@example.com. You can also stop by the office during regular business hours, Monday-Friday, 9am-5pm.
Where can I stay during my workshop?
Rooms at Edgewood Farm are also available for students. They go quickly, so CLICK HERE for more info! There are also a number of inns, motels, and cottages available for rent on the Outer Cape. For a list of recommendations, please get in touch!
What is Castle Hill's cancellation policy?
If you need to cancel your workshop registration for any reason, the following refund policies apply:
- 80% of the total cost will be refunded if Castle Hill is notified of withdrawal thirty days prior to the start of class.
- If you cancel your registration less than thirty days before the start of your class, your entire payment will be forfeited.
To view all registration policies, CLICK HERE.
What should I bring to my workshop?
When you register for a workshop you will receive a copy of the Materials List outlining what you need to bring to the workshop, and what will be provided with the materials fee. The materials list will also be available on our website under the workshop description.
I'm a teacher and would like to take a workshop for Professional Development Points. How do I receive documentation for this?
When you register for a workshop, make sure you contact the Castle Hill office to let us know that you will be taking a workshop(s) for PDP points. The Registrar will write a letter certifying that you took the workshop, number of total hours, etc. according to your specifications.
Do you offer scholarships?
Castle Hill offers a number of scholarships throughout the year, as well as work-study opportunities. For more info visit the OPPORTUNITIES section.
How does the Work-Study program work?
Our Work Study program is for adults who have a strong desire to take a workshop but who may not have the opportunity to take our classes without financial assistance. Work study students receive credit to be applied towards the tuition of their workshop. For every 1.5 hours worked, one hour credit will be applied towards workshop tuition. Work study awards are based on need as well as prior work experience.
Can my child/teen take an adult workshop?
Castle Hill encourages kids/teens to take classes! Depending on the instructor and the skill level of the workshop, we can determine if an adult level course will be a good fit for your young student. It's best to call ahead if you have any doubts about signing your child up for a workshop. We also offer a number of workshops just for kids throughout the summer and even in the off season too!