For more than a decade, Shannon Driscoll and Kayli House operated their studio and art supply store near the intersection of Polk and Davis streets in Oak Cliff. The shop sprang to life in the fall of 2010, not long after Driscoll and House met while volunteering for the neighborhood improvement project Better Block. Called Oil and Cotton—after two natural resources often associated with Dallas, and two of the most basic art supplies—Driscoll and House’s business grew out of that volunteer work. They improved their neighborhood by providing an artistic outlet to it, first in one location and then another, across the street.
This year, they brought their mission to West Dallas. In August, Driscoll and House bought what they call their “forever studio” on Beatrice Street and made the move permanent in January after their Davis Street lease expired. Their new home is in a quadrangle of women-owned businesses, but the draw is the same. The art supply store has always been a welcome mat, a way to get people in the door and expose them to Oil and Cotton’s real aim: education. Trained, professional artists teach weekly classes in drawing, painting, sculpting, embroidery, leatherwork, photography, and pretty much any other discipline, to everyone from toddlers and teens to empty nesters. “You really can’t escape without learning something from an artist,” House says.
In their new location, Driscoll and House feel like they are now a bit more accessible to the greater Dallas area. The goal is to engage with the rest of the city more through team-building activities, programming partnerships with Dallas ISD, and more summer camps, as well as pop-up events that take advantage of their bigger space. They are also working on a membership program for longtime frequent supporters. They just want more art in more people’s lives.
“You don’t have to come in and know how to do something already,” House says. “You don’t even have to know anything about art.”
Keep your budding Picassos occupied during the break with these art camps scattered around North Texas.
Wildflower Art Studio Spring Break Art Camp: At this four-day art camp for kindergarten through fifth grade, children will learn art techniques and build right-brain creativity. March 14–17. 715 N. Locust St., Denton. 940-435-0041.
Old Settler’s Arts and Crafts Camp: Old Settler’s Recreation Center in McKinney has a fun craft planned for your child (ages 6 to 12) for each day of the week. March 7–11. 1201 E. Louisiana St., McKinney. 972-542-5014.
Quiggly’s Clayhouse Spring Break Camp: At Quiggly’s Clayhouse in Richardson, every day is pottery wheel day. There’s also glass fusion, clay sculpting, and canvas painting. March 14–18. 1344 E. Belt Line Rd., Richardson. 972-234-2644.