Welcome to the new website for Waltham Mills Open Studios!
Waltham Mills Artists’ Association at 144 Moody Street partners with Lincoln Studios at 289 Moody Street, and jewelers from Metalwerx the first full weekend in November every year to create one of the areas largest open studio events!
The Waltham Mills Artists Association
The Waltham Mills Artists Association (WMAA) comprises more than 70 artists working in a wide range of media who occupy studio space in two buildings at 144 Moody Street in downtown Waltham, Mass. The larger WMAA building was named The Ira B. Gordon Center for the Arts in 2011 for Ira B (Sonny) Gordon, a prominent local businessman, and a leader in the transformation of the downtown Waltham area. His family has named the building after Sonny in recognition of his commitment to the arts and his leadership role in developing a community in which artists could flourish.
A Revolution Started Here!
Two hundred years ago, the Waltham Cotton and Wool Factory established its business along the Charles River in what is currently the location of the WMAA. Later, Francis Cabot Lowell, along with others, formed the Boston Manufacturing Company (BMC), which produced bolts of cloth by the thousands. The BMC was radical in two major ways: it produced cotton and woolen goods on a tremendous scale, and it used water-powered looms at least seven years before the mills in Lowell and Lawrence. Indeed, Waltham has been a city of many firsts, including one of the first artists’ collectives in the area.
The Revolution Continues
More than 30 years ago, a group of artists began to rehabilitate space in the same buildings that once employed hundreds and had fallen into disuse. Using our money, talent, and labor, we transformed the neglected and degenerated buildings into studios where creativity thrives.
The artists of the WMAA have a long history of community involvement as educators, arts events organizers, and community leaders. Each year, the WMAA hosts its annual Open Studio weekend, a free community event when the public is invited to visit WMAA studios and see where art is made.