The Art Studios have been recognized, both nationally and internationally, as a model of psycho-social rehabilitation for mental illness and addiction issues – because it works! Under the new management of Lookout Society/MBAC, we aim to ensure a safe, respectful and accepting community where people with major mental illnesses and addiction engage and grow through art. We offer free classes and workshops on painting, ceramics, printmaking and more!
NOTE: The Art Studios will be offering classes in a format that follows WorkSafe BC’s COVID-19 plan of care and prevention.
Currently an estimated 300 active clients, who have been referred by their medical professionals, enjoy the structure, warmth and hope for the future that The Art Studios provide. Close to 4000 clients have been helped since its beginning in 1994 (Stats Source: VCH).
To become a member of The Art Studios, or if you are a health care provider and would like to refer someone, please fill out our application form:
The Art Studios Updates
The Art Studios Updates – June 18, 2020
Members, Instructors, Assistants, and staff celebrated the re-opening on June 16th kicking off with our Print-Making Class.
At the studio, we always incorporate mindfulness activities to allow for everyone to arrive, ground, and remain present. It is also our way of being holistic and creating a safe space! Summer Term is for 8 weeks – although it is short – we sure know it’s going to be a lot of fun! Once again, big thanks to all the members for their patience as we ensure safety during the re-opening!
Stay tuned for on-line classes to be offered very soon!
The Art Studios Updates – June 12, 2020
We are very excited to let everyone know that our Summer Classes will start back on Tuesday June 16th!! We look forward to meeting students and instructors for this semester and once again opening The Art Studios doors to members.
Just a friendly reminder to those booked for classes: please bring a mask and wear old painting clothes or bring an apron. We have guidelines in place to ensure safe distancing and handwashing procedures are followed.
At this time we are open on a ‘reduced capacity’ and that means Open Studio and walk-ins are temporarily on hold until we can re-assess measures to re-open following COVID-19 guidelines. We understand that many members are impacted by this decision and we want to assure all members that we are doing our best to review Open Studio and Orientation session for future opening. We will be updating you as soon as we can. We also look forward to offering “online” classes in the near future… stay tuned!
For Questions or Inquiries about The Art Studios please contact the MDABC Office at:
Ph: (604) 873-0103
When you contact us please allow 24-48 hrs for us to respond as we will be busy with classes re-starting again but want to make sure that we respond to your inquiry!
We look forward to meeting those of you who have been involved in The Art Studios through the years, as well as those of you who are new. Thank you for your patience as we all navigate these “new” times together.
The Art Studios Updates – June 5, 2020
We want to thank all the Studio members and VCH for their patience and help as we navigate the opening of the Art Studios during the days of COVID-19. We are doing our best to work quickly to open the space once again in a safe and healthy way.
The Summer Class Schedule is now posted. Class size is limited to 6 participants with the first class starting June 16, 2020. Our operating hours will also be reduced Tuesday – Thursday 9:00 – 4:00pm and Friday 9:00 – 12:00pm, Lunch time is closed between 12:00 – 1:00. Mondays will be closed for cleaning. This summer format and selection process is to ensure a safe and responsible re-launch of the Art Studios. We will continue to re-assess our situation and post updates about the program as they come available.
Last Semester Classes: Unfortunately, due to the COVID-19 outbreak, the January 2020 semester classes had to end early. We are working hard to ensure we integrate instructors and VCH’s feedback from last semester in our planning. Our hope is that we can start offering intermediate classes and Open Studio in the fall that current members can attend. Please bear with us as we navigate this difficult process.
New Intakes: Lookout/MDA is accepting “intakes or referrals” using our new On-line Application Form located on our website.
If you would like to be a member of the Art Studios, or if you are a health care provider, fill out the application and we will add the applicant to our information session wait-list.
Anyone that previously submitted an intake form is on our wait-list and will be contacted once dates are confirmed. Orientation sessions dates and times will be announced here on our website.
A Meeting for Summer Session Instructors and Assistants will occur next week June 08, 2020 before classes begin as part of the preparation process. All of the communication about the The Art Studios is also shared on our social media: The Art Studios’ Facebook page.
The Art Studios Update – May 29, 2020
Some of you may have heard that we are starting a Phase 2 Re-launch for The Art Studios. We are excited to tell you how we plan to safely operate based on the guidelines of PHO and Worksafe BC, as follows:
Summer Class Session
- We will offer reduced classes starting the week of June 15th
- Classes are reduced by half – maximum of 6 participants to allow for safe distancing of 6 ft.
- Additionally, there will be one instructor and assistant per class.
- Sessions reduced – only one class per morning and afternoon to allow time for sanitation and cleaning in between classes
- We will call those on the class waitlist to book these spots
- The Art Studios will only be open on days of classes and will be temporarily closed for volunteers, and general public walk ins until further notice.
Covid Safety Protocols
- All members entering The Art Studios will be required to wash hands and wear a mask and gloves and practice safe procedure guidelines and physical distancing. Workstations are reduced and other rooms/studios will be closed during class session
- Supplies and equipment will be kept separate for those requiring sanitation after use
Open Studio Session
- Open Studio will be temporarily on hold for the summer
- We will re-visit opening in the fall according to safety guidelines and the current Covid situation
Referrals and Intake
- There will be an on-line Application Form available for anyone interested in joining future Orientation and the waitlist. Orientation sessions, will either be offered virtually or in the Fall.
- Will be cancelled for this fall as we are operating on reduced capacity.
- We are looking into the opportunity to offer “on-line” classes for those who were unable to attend sessions. Small supply kits may be offered for pick up. This project may start in the fall.
Members Council Meetings
- We are also looking at ways to continued connecting with members and this may through Zoom/ phone
We understand that this reduced operations schedule will impact many members past and present, eagerly waiting to be a part of the The Art Studios once again. We also want to acknowledge that this is only temporary for the remainder of the summer and that if we maintain these measures, we will hopefully be able to offer more sessions and Open Studio in the future for all the vibrant members of this community!
For inquiries please contact: Lookout/MDABC – The Art Studios at 604-873-0103
The Art Studios Updates – May 15, 2020
The Art Studios Re-Opening Update
When the Premier announced the BC Restart Plan last week, some members expected that The Art Studiso would also be open as of May 19, after the Victoria Day long weekend.
This is exciting news, however there are still a few requirements that Lookout/MDA will need to have in place before we are able to implement our general start plan date. We will be receiving further guidance from the Provincial Health Authority and Worksafe BC and are mandated to develop a new Covid-19 Safety Plan before returning to safe operations.
In the coming days, we will communicate to our members on how the Art Studio will continue through phase 2 of the restart. We will take our lead and guidance from the Provincial Health Officer and other public health experts as we develop expectations for our members in anticipation of the re-opening.
What we foresee as of today:
• We will likely need to modify the reception and studio rooms to comply with physical distancing protocols
• Policies for hand hygiene will need to be in place for all staff and members
• Modifications to supplies, tools, equipment will need to be modified to minimize ‘touch’ surfaces
• Art Studio cleaning protocols will need to be enhanced to ensure common surfaces are sanitized throughout the day, including reception desk, art supplies, equipment, etc.
• Ensure any staff or member who is unwell stays home
• Ensure members are screened for any symptoms when entering the Studio and to follow emergency protocols.
• Access to approved masks and gloves will be provided
• Regular communication to members is particularly important.
• Follow WorkSafe BC and PHO Guidelines for control measures
Lastly, while there are still many unknowns, we are aware that the members of the The Art Studios are anxious to return and that, waiting and wondering, is very frustrating. We are also waiting for further guidelines from Worksafe and the Health Authorities so that we can assist members with this next phase.
Thank you for your continued patience as we work on next steps for the Art Studio. We will continue to update our progress here.
The Art Studios Update – May 1, 2020
Thank you all for your patience and understanding during this time of physical distancing and the closing of The Art Studios due to COVID-19.
We recognize that these are challenging times, especially as the Studio is closed and we (Lookout/MDABC) have now taken on the responsibility of operating the Art Studios.
We hope we can clarify a few things below.
What is happening with The Art Studios and when will it re-open?
Currently, the studios remain closed as we are following BC Public Health Emergency orders. We do not yet have an opening date, but we will continue to provide updates on our website and The Art Studios Facebook page. Our next update should be by mid-May (May 15th).
Who is Lookout Society and MDABC?
Lookout Society has a history in Vancouver for over 48 years. For more information see our website here: www.lookoutsociety.ca. MDABC is a branch of Lookout Society and will operate the Art Studio as one of its programs. For more information on MDABC visit our website here: www.mdabc.net
I was supposed to graduate and say farewell to VCH staff and welcome Lookout staff in April. What will happen now?
We are disappointed that many members were unable to ‘officially’ complete their classes and thank instructors and staff. However, we look forward to providing this opportunity once The Art Studios re-open. Stay tuned for more details.
When will the new Class Schedule start?
We hope to reopen this summer or as soon as the Health Minister allows non-essential services to open again. Instructors will be called ahead of time and those on the class waitlists will be contacted.
What if I want to speak to someone about the The Art Studios?
The new Studios phone number will be posted on Facebook. We will also post any Studio updates on here as well as the Lookout/MDA website www.mdabc.net
For any about The Art Studios, please call the MDABC Office at: 604-873-0103
or email: firstname.lastname@example.org
March 30, 2020
THE ART STUDIOS ARE CLOSED THROUGH APRIL DUE TO THE COVID-19 SITUATION
Here is an important message from The Art Studios and Lookout:
Dear valued Art Studios member’s, participants’, volunteer’s and contractor’s, we hope you are all staying healthy and safe during these exceptional circumstances.
As you likely already have guessed, we will be continuing with the closure of the Art Studios for the time being, for the month of April at this point.
Also, the start date for the next class cycle remains to be determined. We will continue providing updates via RTA Facebook page and MDABC website.
We would like to acknowledge this is a very challenging and unprecedented time for everyone, with abrupt disruptions and changes in all of our lives and at all levels of society, both locally and around the globe. During this uncertainty and change we are experiencing, it is extra important to manage our stress and focus on our self-care, focus on things we can control, engage on those activities that bring us joy (as possible), and utilize the numerous online resources that have become available.
We appreciate your understanding and we look forward to when the Art Studios community can come together again, as soon as possible! In the mean time, we ask that we support one another with tolerance, patience and kindness, focus on our self-care, and recognize that collectively we will get through this together and have much to be grateful for, like this community and the work that will continue with all of our efforts, support and creativity upon return.
The Art Studios & Lookout Society Staff
The links below are the best sources of information for updated information on COVID-19 situation, including public health office recommendations, prevention strategies, and the governments recovery response:
March 27, 2020
Lookout MDABC is excited to announce that we were recently awarded the bid to run VCH Art Studio program!
The Art Studios location is currently hosted at VCH location: 2005 E. 44th Ave, Vancouver BC and has been running for over 22 years.
The Art Studios program is designed from a bio-psycho/social model of recovery and the requirement for membership is people with a Mental Health diagnosis living in Vancouver. Programs are currently available for youth (19-26) and adults which may include: Acrylics/Drawing/Mixed Media/Pottery/Print Making/Watercolor to name a few.
MDABC will be looking at future ways to broaden The Art Studios and provide more workshops, classes and open studio opportunities in the future.
The current Members and Instructors of the program are very proud of their community and development in the Arts and we would like to encourage continued growth and development opportunities!
Stay tuned for more updates!