The Art Workshop in Boonton New Jersey
Since 1995, The Art Workshop of Boonton has been a working studio for local artists in and around Boonton. Members are comprised of amateur and professional artists, who work in various disciplines and media.
In the mid eighties a number of us with turpentine and oil paint in our veins were lucky enough to happen upon a small art studio known as “The Art Workshop.” It was a nondescript little place on the second floor of a store front on Main Street in Boonton, New Jersey.
The special thing about the place was the instructor, William R. Guida. He was a self-taught artist, Parsippany Police Captain by day, artist and teacher by night. He was able to pass along his love of art to all, no matter what the skill level of the student. He was known to threaten to take away a student’s tube of white paint for over using it. He also had a “Brush of the Month” plaque which featured a well-worn two haired brush which had been gently wrested from someone’s hand. His favorite thing was to toss out a leading statement and then step back as we all took the bait arguing vehemently with each other while he smiled to himself and went back to his painting in progress.
We lost Bill, our good friend and teacher to cancer in 1995. On one of his last visits to the studio he told us that he hoped that we would stay together and keep the studio going. I think by that time we realized he had given us much more that art instruction. He had pulled us together as a group of not just artists but caring friends.
Our group, The Art Workshop, has continued to grow and although we have no teacher there is plenty of critiquing and encouragement to go around.