Mural project begins at the Box Factory for the Arts

Mural project begins at the Box Factory for the Arts

ST. JOSEPH, MI — The façade of the Box Factory for the Arts on Broad Street in St. Joseph is taking flight under the artistry of Kimberly Woods. Her mural design “Birds of a Feather, Flock Together” will wrap the sides and front of the building in a colorful mix of flora and fauna.

“The design is meant to emulate the community and the arts in a vibrant and playful way,” says Kimberly. “I specifically chose origami birds to mimic the history of the Box in paper products and then evolve and take flight into something colorful and new.

I believe that the Box Factory and artists within it are what keeps the arts in St. Joseph alive and flourishing – not just the visual arts but the performing arts, the galleries, the ArtMarket and more.”

The Berrien Artist Guild at the Box Factory feels the work on the mural will be a positive visual during these unusual times. Once the COVID-19 guidelines are relaxed and the gallery hours return to normal, the mural will pull visitors in to explore what the Box has to offer. In the meantime, it will provide a backdrop for photographs by passersby.

Kimberly Wood, who works in a variety of media, has been a regular participant in the local Chalk the Block events. As an international street artist, she has participated in festivals in many states including the Coloured Earth Festival in Halifax, England and the Sarasota Chalk Festival in Florida.

Kimberly has helped create murals in North Dakota and Minnesota. The most recent mural in Breckenridge, MN was awarded the Arts Legacy City designation, one of only 9 cities to receive the designation. Her work has been entered in Box Factory exhibits and can be viewed on her website at A graduate of Grand Valley State University, she is a full time Commercial Design instructor at Van Buren Tech Center in Lawrence, MI.

The mural is being underwritten by a grant from the Michigan Council for the Arts and Cultural Affairs and the National Endowment for the Arts which has been matched by members and friends of the Berrien Artist Guild.  Scaffolding and lift are being donated to the project by Giannola Construction Services.

For more on the mural project, contact the Box Factory at or visit the Box online at or on Facebook.

Berrien Artist Guild Member Update

Berrien Artist Guild Member Update


Thank you for helping us reach our goal during “Raise the Box,” our very first online art auction fundraiser. We exceeded our goal of raising $5,000 with a grand total of $5,157! We can’t thank our donors enough for supporting the Berrien Artist Guild at the Box Factory for the Arts.

As you know, our galleries are closed and our stage is dark; yet, we continue to explore innovative ways to provide fine art and performances to our community. We couldn’t do it without the expertise and volunteer help of so many. Please join me in thanking those who worked tirelessly to make this goal a reality. 

We’re grateful for the leadership and insight of the Executive Board, Judy Sokolowski, Scott Gane, Rose Narregan and Linda Cooper, the Board of Directors, Bret Witkowski, Dennis Gast, Jane Rush, Jennifer Tomshack, Stephen Smith and Susan Solon.  I’m thankful to the volunteer committee whose collective skills and willing spirit were invaluable, Kate Ulery, Carol Myers, Betsy Gill, Nicole Brown, Denise Barcowicz, John Bougearal, Kristin Hosbein, Breeze Ettl, and Lynn Christiano. 

The event would not have been the same without the talent of Ed Bagatini and the Revival of the Cool, a Jazz Tenette and the behind the video and audio skills of Bryan Lubeck and his audio/ video editors. Thank you! 

Thank you to all the artists who donated beautiful pieces of art and for sharing stories during the live events. This was truly an art gallery of talent and creativity! 

Many thanks to our sponsors and the community: St Joseph Today, Priebe’s Creative Woodworking, Sherwood Snyder, Fred Holland and Judy Sokolowski

Moving forward, with your generosity, we will bridge the financial gap of the cost of staying in business while we strive to creatively re-imagine ways to provide art, education and performances. We look forward to engaging our patrons, and audiences throughout the community.

Under the leadership of Jane Rush, the gallery committee has decided that the Michiana Annual Arts Competition (MAAC) will not be held this year. The committee is in the process of altering the exhibition schedule for the remainder of 2020. They also are planning a re-design of the MAAC show for 2021 and returning to in-house gallery exhibits. Stay tuned for more information from this busy group.

The Board of Directors approved changes to the membership fees starting with this fiscal year. The membership categories and benefits have changed to more accurately reflect our unique members’ needs. New members and those who renew their membership will now receive a gift card based on their membership level for an ArtMarket or Gallery purchase. For a full list of benefits, visit the website for all the enhancements.

Kimberly Wood’s mural concept, “Birds of a Feather, Flock Together,” was selected by the Board of Directors for installation on the exterior of the Box Factory starting this week. It will be exciting to watch the mural unfold and change our face on Broad Street.

The mural is being funded by a grant from the Michigan Council for the Arts and Cultural Affairs which was matched by donations from many members and friends. Since it must be completed by September 30, the board made the decision to approve it on behalf of the membership.

In addition to the concept submitted by Kimberly, a second member Caroline Tubbs submitted “Building Blocks.” Both concepts were beautifully presented and the vote by the board reflected that with a very narrow victory for “Birds of a Feather.” We are hoping to use Caroline’s concept with a variation of her design in the future.

As we cautiously move forward during the pandemic, we are planning to open our gallery doors to the public. Beginning on September 4, we will be open from noon to 4 pm on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays. Masks and social distancing guidelines will be in effect.

A crew of volunteers have been busy expanding the ArtMarket into the Williams Gallery to provide more artwork for visitors to view. Susan Plee, Susan Solon, and Elaine Harju have been hanging and arranging artwork in anticipation of the reopening. A big thank you for their efforts.

As we open the expanded Art Market, now would be a perfect time for you to try and sell your art.  If you have a piece(s) that you would like to put in the market. Please contact Judy or Amy or email us at

Box Factory for the Arts Limited Re-Opening

Box Factory for the Arts Limited Re-Opening

The Box Factory for the Arts will be open to the public from noon to 4 pm beginning Friday, Sept. 4.  The limited schedule of noon to 4 pm will continue on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays until further notice.

Masks will be required and social distancing guidelines will be in effect. The gallery exhibits will continue their presence online, while the ArtMarket has been expanded into the Williams Gallery.

The expanded ArtMarket will provide an opportunity for visitors to view a greater variety of artwork and purchase certain items at reduced prices.

During the open hours, some resident artists will also be available in their studios or they can be contacted by appointment. For additional information, you can contact the Box Factory by email at: or visit online at the Box Factory’s website or Facebook page.