Hey there and welcome to this post about art in Providence. Galleries, museums, supplies, schools, shows, events and more will be discussed in full detail on this page.
Your time is valuable so we will try to get right to it. The best Providence Art Galleries and Museums where you can see some of the finest exhibitions and collections the city has to offer is where we will start.
The best art stores where you can buy all the supplies and materials near you will be up next. Then we will give a quick shout out to the best shows and events this town has to offer.
On a sunny day you could go on an art walking tour or see some of the most unique statues and sculptures in your area. Local art classes and lessons can level up your game and whether you prefer group classes or private lessons there are options.
There are some art studios for rent near you where you can get the ball rolling on your next project. Appraisers, dealers, and framing shops will also be topics as things move forward.
The Northeast is an area that we have written about many times before.
Best Art Galleries & Museums In Providence
When you are ready to check out the best art galleries and museums in Providence you can head to:
- Risd Museum at 20 N Main St
- Bannister Gallery at 600 Mount Pleasant Ave
- Gelman Student Exhibitions Gallery at 20 N Main St
- Chazan Gallery at 228 Angell St
- David Winton Bell Gallery at 64 College St
- As220 Project Space Gallery at 95 Mathewson St
- Gallery Z at 259 Atwells Ave
- Skye Gallery at 381 Broadway
- Bert Gallery at 24 Bridge St
- World’s Fair Gallery at 268 Broadway
- Cade Tompkins Projects at 198 Hope St
- Eunoia Gallery at 275 W Natick Rd, Warwick
- Carol Shelton Fine Art at 90 Davidson Rd, Warwick
More than 80,000 works of art are on display at the creative and globally recognized RISD Museum, ranging from Paul Revere’s silver and caricatures of 18th century Europe to French Impressionists and the avant-garde works of contemporary graduates. A Japanese Buddha from the 12th century has its own chamber with seats for meditation as well.
The Chazan Gallery is a non-profit artists’ gallery that showcases a diverse spectrum of modern work by local and regional artists. The gallery, which is located on the East Side of town between Brown University and RISD, is entirely funded by the Wheeler School as a gift to the artistic community.
Brown’s modern art gallery, the David Winton Bell Gallery, houses a significant portion of the university’s permanent art collection. The Gallery, which opened in 1971, holds four to five major exhibitions each year, each with accompanying programming such as talks, performances, and symposia.
AS220 is a non-profit community arts group that has four rotating gallery spaces, a performance stage, a black box theater, a print shop, a darkroom and media arts lab, a fabrication and electronics lab, a dance studio, a youth program focusing on youth in state care and in the Rhode Island juvenile detention facility, and 47 affordable live/work studios.
Gallery Z is a fine art gallery located on Historic Federal Hill. Skye Gallery celebrates contemporary art that speaks to their humanity, challenges the dominant narrative, and offers a vision for tomorrow.
Bert Gallery was established in 1985 with the goal of showcasing and preserving Rhode Island’s and the region’s rich art traditions. The exhibit focuses on the rediscovery of historically significant painters who reflect key American art styles and trends.
World’s Fair Gallery focuses in bringing together modern 2D and 3D works by artists from all over the Northeast. For corporate and individual collections, they provide art purchases, coordination, and gallery services.
Cade Tompkins Projects is a Contemporary Art Gallery that features the work of gallery artists in the form of paintings, drawings, sculpture, video, and prints. They also have an exhibition program that represents creators specializing in contemporary art, but they are by appointment only so you must call or email them to set up a reservation.
Eunoia Gallery has a carefully chosen selection of fine art by regionally and globally recognized artists. The gallery, which opened in May 2014, includes a mix of internationally recognized and prominent local artists and provides serious art purchasers with a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to acquire collectible and investment items while staying accessible to all art lovers.
Carol Ann Shelton relocated from Canada to London where a BA in Visual Arts was obtained at the University of Western Ontario. The London Regional Art Gallery and the Art of St. Thomas-Elgin have both hosted exhibits of her work.
Materials & Supplies Near You
These art stores in your area should have all of the materials and supplies you need:
- RISD Store at 30 N Main St
- Jerry’s Artarama at 653 N Main St
- Blick Art Materials at 200 Wickenden St
- Dollar Tree at 395 Admiral St
- Michaels at 1500 Bald Hill Rd, Warwick
- Joann at 1500 Bald Hill Rd, Warwick
- Hobby Lobby at 945 Bald Hill Rd, Warwick
The Rhode Island School of Design’s campus is served by the Risd Store, a non-profit art supply, gift, book, clothing, alumni and faculty work, and convenience store. For almost 50 years, Jerry’s Artarama has provided their RI community with cheap, high-quality art supplies.
In 1911, Blick began with a single pen. Their dedication to quality, service, and excellence has molded who they are now for over a century.
Glass, wood, or plastic beads, googly eyes, glitter, sequins, pearls, confetti, and other craft items are available at Dollar Tree. These materials are ideal for crafting jewelry, incorporating into school projects, serving as decorations, and even making slime. It is a good place to quickly buy cheap art supplies in your area.
You probably already know what chain stores like the Michaels, Joann, and Hobby Lobby near you have to offer.
Shows & Events
Some of the top art shows and events in Rhode Island are held here like:
- Art Providence Show Spring in April
- Gaspee Days Arts & Crafts Fall Festival in June
- Providence Artisans Market held Weekly
- Gallery Night on Third Thursdays
The Art Providence Show continues to attract a diverse group of award-winning artists and craftsmen from all over the country, as well as from right here in Rhode Island, providing both breadth and depth to its 15 categories of work. The event’s RISD connection, careful selection, and inclusion of artists from diverse backgrounds have resulted in a display unlike any other you’ll see.
The Gaspee Days Committee is a civic-minded nonprofit group that organizes a variety of community activities in and around Pawtuxet Village, including the annual Gaspee Days Parade. All of these events are being held to commemorate the infamous British revenue schooner’s burning.
The Providence Artisans Market, which features handmade art and fine crafts, paintings, jewelry, glass, apparel, accessories, and more, is a great place to spend some time outside while supporting over 100 local artists.
From March through November, twenty-five of the city’s greatest art places open their doors for a visual arts party on the third Thursday of each month. You may either take a free guided Art Trolley tour or choose your own route, walking or driving to your favorite galleries.
Art Dealers & Appraisers
When you want to find some new unique works or figure out the true value of something visit dealers and appraisers like:
- Providence Art Club at 11 Thomas St
- The Arctic Gallery at 1227 Main St, Warwick
The Providence Art Club was formed in 1880 by a group of professional painters, amateurs, and art collectors who wanted to promote art appreciation in the community. The founders recommended that this new organization exist for art culture, and when they convened to draft their charter on a February night in 1880, they wrote that statement on their seal.
In 2019, the Arctic Gallery was converted from an old pawn store into a cutting-edge gallery and today they can handle any of your design needs, including remodels, interior design, and fine art. Gallery Z and Skye Gallery from our first list also sell art.
These art walking tours can be a lot of fun on a nice day:
- Downtown Providence at 30 Exchange Terrace
- The Avenue Concept at 304 Lockwood St
The Providence Warwick Convention & Visitors Bureau (CVB) announced the debut of two new self-guided walking tours showcasing Downtown and the West Side as part of National Travel and Tourism Week.
Remember how we mentioned the The Providence Artisans Market before? That would also be an outstanding place to walk around to find many creative things.
You should also be checking out Gallery Night on each Third Thursday of the month from March through November. And our next section suggests Roger Williams Park is another great option.
Sculptures & Statues
You may also be interested in taking photos of these statues and sculptures:
- Gun Totem at S Main St
- Brigadier Casimir Pulaski Statue at Roger Williams Park
- George M Cohan Memorial at 468 Wickenden St
- Bowen R Church Statue at Roger Williams Park
- Juan Pablo Duarte Statue at Roger Williams Park
Artist Boris Bally and the Guns For Goods buyback program collaborated on the Gun Totem, a sculptural piece. Guns were deactivated and thrown into a concrete pillar rather than being destroyed. The weapons were subsequently exposed after the concrete was scraped away.
Brigadier General Casimir Pulaski’s equestrian monument may be seen in Roger Williams Park. On an 8′ by 9′ by 15′ granite foundation, a magnificent 14′ by 5.5′ by 13′ bronze equestrian statue of Brigadier General Casimir Pulaski rises. A
On Broadway, George M. Cohan will be remembered for the rest of his life. In Times Square, a statue honoring the late composer and singer, who wrote such iconic songs as “Over There,” “You’re a Grand Old Flag,” and “Yankee Doodle Dandy,” stands proudly, saluting everyone who passes by.
Bowen L. Church, commonly known as the Bandmaster, is commemorated with a bronze statue near the north end of Roosevelt Pond in Roger Williams Park. A bronze statue of the bandleader, measuring 7.5′ by 33″ by 30″, stands on a 2.5′ diameter circular base that sits on a wedge-shaped taupe and white tiled platform supported by a low rock wall.
On Hawthorne Avenue in Roger Williams Park a monument honors Juan Pablo Duarte, a founding father of the Dominican Republic. A life-size metal bust stands atop a 5′ high trapezoidal stone foundation.
Providence Art Classes
Whether you are trying to find private lessons or group classes for kids, teens, or adults the best Providence art schools are:
- Rhode Island School of Design at 2 College St
- East Side Art Center at 26 Rochambeau Ave
- Muse Paintbar at 117 N Main St
- The Steel Yard at 27 Sims Ave
- Warwick Center for the Arts at 3259 Post Rd, Warwick
- Artful Expressions at 1191 Main St, Warwick
- Moonstone Art Studio at 953 Namquid Dr, Warwick
The Rhode Island School of Design (RISD) is a little college in a small state, yet it has a large international reputation. RISD, pronounced RIZ-dee, was founded in 1877 and attracts the best art and design students from all across the country and the world. Approximately 2,400 undergraduate and graduate students pursue full-time degree programs in 19 studio majors in the visual arts, architecture, and design each year, sharing their creative energy.
In 1992, Carolyn and Don Simon founded the East Side Art Center. Initially, twenty-six pupils – adults and children – flocked to Sunrise Corporation’s second-floor art studio, which specializes in graphics and marketing. Since then, they’ve had students come from as far as New Bedford, Brookline, Newport, Westerly, and Woonsocket to attend lessons. Their previous seminars in Florence, Italy, and Block Island drew participants from all around the world.
The goal was to become the top paint + sip experience near you when Muse Paintbar launched its first location in 2012. What they want to achieve was a pleasant and relaxed atmosphere in which everyone could take up a paintbrush and create something beautiful. It is fair to say that because of the ‘sipping’ these are more casual art classes than some of the others.
The Steel Yard founders, Nick Bauta and Clay Rockefeller, bought the highly polluted and under-utilized Providence Steel and Iron (PSI) facility in 2001 and converted it as an industrial arts resource for the community. It was founded in collaboration with a large group of local activists to address the relocation of small businesses and artists in the Olneyville and Valley neighborhoods.
MoonStone Art Studio is an intimate studio environment that focuses on basic art instruction for all ages and levels, is family oriented, and hosts special artists, seminars, and birthday parties for all occasions.
Studios For Rent Near You
You might be able to rent local art studio space if you contact:
- The Wurks at 45 Acorn St
- Ajay Land Company at 295 Harris Ave #1
Located in the historic mill area, The Wurks is a jointly managed artist’s workplace. Their location includes large studio spaces for both individual artists and groups, as well as community wood and metal fabrication facilities, a print shop, and an exhibition space.
Ajay Land Company provides artist work spaces for rent. AS220 and MoonStone Art Studio also have studio space available.
Some of the top places for art framing in Providence are:
- Eastern Art & Frame Company at 1376 Eddy St
- Providence Picture Frame at 1350 Mineral Spring Ave
- The Camera Werks at 766 Hope St
- Hobby Frames at 1265 Post Rd, Warwick
- American Picture Frame at 1094 Bald Hill Rd, Warwick
Eastern Art & Frame Company has been a full-service family-owned and run frame shop in the Washington Park area since 1955. Providence Picture Frame is New England’s largest art and frame store with a legendary reputation and history dating back to 1879.
The Camera Werks is one of Rhode Island’s remaining independent camera stores. They’ve been in business since 1987, specializing on customized service and if it’s photographic, they’ll do it.
Hobby Frames is a professional framing firm that specializes in supplying collectors with high-quality, one-of-a-kind display frames constructed of solid wood mouldings. American Picture Frame has been dedicated to offering the best quality frames and customer service since 2002. All of their work is completed on-site, with same-day service available when needed.
You can check out some of our other posts on:
- The Best Art Galleries In Boston
- The Best Art Galleries In Portland, ME
- The Best Art Galleries In Springfield
- The Best Art Galleries In New Haven
Have Fun Enjoying The Providence Art Scene
Well guys, we tried to cover the full art scene near you to the best of our abilities. We listed the best galleries, museums, events, shows, supply stores, dealers, appraisers, walking tours, sculptures, classes, studios, and framers in your area.
If you made it this far you probably know a lot about the local art scene yourself. Feel free to share your own tips, or to let us know if you noticed anything incorrect in the comments.
Have fun going to the galleries, museums, buying supplies or doing anything that has to do with art in Providence!