Canterbury Episcopal Church offers art classes over the summer

The idea of art as a means of expression is one that draws meaning for many individuals, and one church in Tuscaloosa helped to fulfill that desire this past summer through its classes and exhibit.

By Jared Ferguson
News Producer

Art, as a form of expression, draws many to engage in the activity through the pursuit of classes. These classes are offered through a variety of sponsors, one of which is known as the Canterbury Episcopal Church, located at 812 5th Ave. in Tuscaloosa.

The classes offered at the church are not restricted by age or skill. Canterbury’s art classes offer their services to those as young as grade school, and they do not necessarily have to be pursuing art as a career. This was confirmed by Ann Betak, a woman who conducts lessons for the Canterbury art program.

“I have other people who have had art in college or grammar school sometimes, and they do not have it in schools in between or in college,” Betak said. “They come in just because they are curious. We have others who have a lot more experience as well.”

The church has offered classes this summer for a small fee to those who are interested in expressing themselves through their work in a variety of styles. The Rev. Marc Burnette, who is the chaplain and rector of the parish, highlighted the importance of the diversity among the students.

“One of the strengths of the class here at Canterbury is that there are different kinds of artists working in the same space and to the same end, which is to create art and define each artist’s unique vision and voice,” he said. “There are different kinds of people and that is easily seen when you look at the different kinds of paintings of paintings. You can sense the different kinds of personalities behind the artwork.”

Lorrie Lane, a studio artist, acknowledged that while there are no set professional criteria for the students themselves or their style of work, the nature of the artwork’s subject matter is a primary consideration for whether they are presented in the gallery.

“In a year’s time, we have had three-dimensional work, but there is not a permanent place for it to stay secure,” Lane said. “In the two-dimensional realm, we have had photography, oil paintings, water color and acrylic. They have to be more family friendly because they are hung in a church.”

Any individuals, regardless of age, who are interested in attending the art classes next summer, as well as having their work featured at Canterbury, are encouraged to contact Lane and Burnette at their emails: and