Our Program

While not all of our artists receive wide-spread recognition for their practice, all gain a sense of pride from learning a craft and profession of their own. Our artists work hard at creating. We’re proud of what they do, so we work hard to sell their work.

Equally important to the artists is the community and sense of purpose their participation allows. Mentored by skilled professionals (all of the staff hold a Masters of Fine Arts degree and are themselves accomplished artists), NIAD’s artists see and study contemporary art by visiting local galleries, studios and museums. Inspired, they return to the NIAD open studio to create their own work. The NIAD studio environment has been described by visitors and participants alike as inclusive, nurturing, and welcoming.

Here are the features of our program: we provide professional guidance for clients, imparting both artistic and independent living skills. We proffer a way for adults with disabilities to explore creativity, acquire new skills, and earn money from selling art. We offer talented and skilled staff with connections in the contemporary art world. We are a supportive community and environment.

Our program for artists operates Monday through Friday 9:00 to 3:00 pm, and is closed on major holidays.

How to Enroll

Are you, your client, relative or friend a consumer of the Regional Center of the East Bay (RCEB)?

If yes // Please contact your case manager for a referral and have your most recent IPP and other documents sent to NIAD. Once NIAD staff have reviewed your files, you’ll be offered a tour and will be tentatively accepted into our program. Then you’ll be invited for a trial day at the Art Center. During this visit you’ll discover the structure of the day, meet other artists, speak with staff, and ideally, discover the pleasure of creating art in our studio.

If the trial day goes well, both you and NIAD’s Director of Client Services will contact your case manager at the RCEB who will secure the funding and assist you in arranging transportation.  You will also need a current medical report and TB test to enroll.  Once transportation and the medical paperwork are complete, a starting date will be selected.

If no // Tuition is required to attend the program and enrollment availability is limited. Please contact the Community Programs Director for more information and to schedule a tour.

Important Notes About Our Program

NIAD Art Center does not administer medication to artists during the program. We do not accept artists with a history of aggressive behaviors towards others. The Art Center does not assist artists with daily toileting issues. NIAD does not provide a lunch program. We do not own a van for regular transport of artists. NIAD Art Center does not have lockers for artists, valuables should be left at home.