An Artist’s Belonging

An Artist’s Belonging by Ryan Hutchison

The Hub Art Factory has been a haven for artists in our community in Canton, Ohio. You can find a huge variety of artists at the Hub: sculptors, two-dimensional painters, installation artists, and so much more. The artists at the Hub are constantly innovating their styles of artwork and taking creative risks. We always appreciate it when you take the time to come to the Hub and look at what is being made right now. Stop by the Hub, take in the latest exhibit and let us know what you think!

Canton, Ohio-First Friday

One of the highlights of every month in Canton, Ohio is First Friday in the Canton Arts District. Everyone from artists, musicians, restaurants, studios, and shops celebrate and exhibit their crafts every first Friday of the month. It is a great chance for the community to support independent people in their crafts, to walk around downtown Canton, to stop in a place you might not go to otherwise, and to discover something new.

There are often activities, such as crafts or games to do. This past Friday there was a printing activity in the Silo Arts Studio put on by Malone University.  The activity boasted traditional printing techniques that used Lego as the stamp, and First Friday-goers were also able to print Canton, Ohio themed prints to take home. The warm studio drew people in to join the fun and there were people carrying the prints celebrating Canton throughout the evening.

First Friday is oriented around bringing joy to all ages and types of people. There is always something exciting for kids to try, and it is a marvelous way for the youth to see art and handmade items that are so often overtaken by commercialized products. The evening is also a big draw to young people who are simply looking for an atmosphere of fun and artistic freedom.

For every First Friday, there are unique monthly themes that the arts district participates in, like the most recent one: Lego Mania, which brings the creativity of vastly different people together. The scenery completely changes from month to month, it is always a surprise as to what you may see.

At the Hub Art Factory, there is a monthly theme for shows as well. From solo exhibits displaying the artwork of a wide variety of artists, to live art shows and competitions, the Hub always has something fascinating worth coming to appreciate. It is a fabulous opportunity to get connected with local artists and ask them questions about what they are working on at the moment, or even visit their studio and learn a little bit of what they enjoy creating.

So take an evening off, take your time exploring downtown Canton, and see what there is to find!


 (From April 2014)

I had a dream last night that I had failed.  The Hub was dismantled and more importantly what I had been working towards for years was meaningless.

Paint and color and wire and solder and creation were meaningless.

I wanted to crawl back under the covers and just die.  It stuck with me all day–I couldn’t shake it.

I need to let you all in on something: It does mean a lot to me.  Regardless of what it means to anyone else, it’s always going to be an important part of my life.  I’m a nerd about it.  It moves me.  It inspires me.  It depresses me.  And it still blows my mind.  I’ve never seen a photo, a painting, a sculpture, a film and thought “Now I’ve seen it all–time for something else!”  There is still so much more we can do.  So much more inspiration and empathy and deep thought and humor and harmony that we can impart.  These are what make us human.

This is why it’s not meaningless.

And so I ask politely and even beg you–support them.  Support us.  Help us.  Join us.  Ask us to help you.  Here are three things you can do:


1) If you care about someone who puts their work up in public–take the time to notice it.  “Like” it.  Share it.  Even if it’s not mind-blowing, earth-shaking, or even very eye-catching.  Because they tried.  Hard.  And it represents something deep within them.  They made themselves vulnerable.  Let them know you get it.

2) Come to our shows and events.  If you’ve ever hosted a party you know it’s stressful.  Those people who consider themselves artists often times have a tendency to be poor organizers.  Help them out.  Show up.  For my friends in Canton, OH–Come downtown on First Fridays and pop your head into our studios and galleries.  Translations always has amazing exhibits. 2nd April is chalk full of amazing art. Lynda Tuttle’s place is always vibrant. Saxton has absolutely amazing photography. Journey is sparkling and an amazing space. 13th Floor has cool/creepy collections.  We’re trying to create our own unique space at The Hub on 6th and all the studios on 4th st are incredible.  Not to mention Buzzbin, George’s, Auricle, Frankenstein, and all the other music, food, drink venues downtown.  So much to do–come check it out.

3) Buy our things.  If you don’t like our things, commission us to do something you do like.  A $20 bill seems to keep an artist working hard for a week if they’re selling a piece of their art to a gracious patron.  Ask us to help you with a project.  Ask us for advice.  Keep us working.  Because we will create amazing things if you give us the chance.

I love the city and community I work in and I’d love to see it flourish.  Then…maybe then I’ll stop posting sappy notes and sending fb invites to my shows.

Keepin’ it Canton,