We are a group of artists and crafts people who have been formally established since 1965. Originally called The Studio Group, we painted at the old Putnamville School until we grew in numbers to now over 200 members and changed our name to the Danvers Art Association. We have been exhibiting paintings at the Peabody Institute Library, Danvers and at the Maple Street Congregational Church, because we have not had a permanent home for years.
When the Town of Danvers condemned to be torn down the old, unused Williams School on Elliot Street (Route 62), the Danvers Art Association put in a bid for the building. The Town awarded us a lease for the school if we could restore it to its appearance at the turn of the century. We were delighted to attempt this!
Inherent in the aesthetics of this building's design is an essential beauty and structural soundness, which make it a candidate to be one of the most significant structures in Danvers. Designed by architect Lester C. Couch, construction was completed in 1916. Mr. Couch also designed the beautiful Peabody Institute Library in Danvers and the original section of the Danvers Savings Bank.
The Williams School was named for Mildred Williams, a beloved teacher there for many years. This is the only building in Danvers to carry the name of a woman.
We, the Danvers Art Association have restored the building to its original beauty. We need contributions from those who have an interest in promoting the arts in the greater Danvers area, along with financial assistance from benevolent businesses, corporations, banks and all organizations which have within their charter a spirit of charity for the community of which they are a part.
The Vision of the Williams School
The vision of the Danvers Art Association at the Williams School is to inspire, educate and enhance the quality of life for the community of Danvers, through the fine arts.
Our first years have focused on the renovation of the beautify building. The building is used today as space for a weekend gallery that is open year round on weekends from 12-4. It allows us to display a permanent fine arts and crafts exhibit, art association meetings, artists' demonstrations and open houses for art shows that involve the entire community. We also provide a home for small theatrical performances, Irish dancing, artistic movies of ghost stories of ghosts from New England, monthly music such as country western and folk, and yoga. We look forward to continue to provide art to the community and we envision that in the future years, the Williams School will become a cultural magnet for artists, poets and literary groups, musicians and small theater.