Selena Ponio | October 14, 2017
The Notre Dame Center for Arts and Culture, located in South Bend, seeks to educate people through art, culture and community engagement. Associate director of community relations Jackie Rucker said the South Bend community created the idea.
“We conducted surveys in the community to find out if Notre Dame had a facility in the west side of town what they would like us to do,” Rucker said. “Overwhelmingly the community expressed an interest in exposure to art and culture and, in particular, art and culture in underrepresented groups.”
The center was inaugurated in March 2013 when Gilberto Cardenas, founding director of the Institute for Latino Studies, was looking for a new location in the community for the institute.
“Our job at this center is to connect the campus to the community and vice versa,” Rucker said.
Rucker said Cardenas had a vision for an art gallery and established the Crossroads Gallery, which showcases contemporary art. The center also has the Segura Arts Studio, which showcases the work of underrepresented artists, Rucker said.
“The Segura Arts Studio works with world class artists whose work has a social justice message,” she said. “The mission of the studio is to get the works of those artists into major collections.”
In addition to displaying art, the center also offers educational programs, Rucker said. Such programs include an after school program and an art summer camp.