From a mobile operated paint-and-sip to now a community center for the arts, Latosha Greenleaf’s Urban Cultural Art and Event Center is driven by a need to do more for the community.
Urban Cultural Art and Event Center, 906 East Walnut Street in Green Bay, is a creative hub for the community. The focus is on creativity, learning and social connection as a way to engage all ages in the Green Bay community.
Formally launched in 2022, its origin dates to 2018 with paint-and-sips at elementary schools and elderly care facilities in the area. Popularity grew, so Greenleaf acquired a space to expand her efforts. Greenleaf recognized a lack of creative outlets for urban youth and urban families in Green Bay and the Fox Valley area — the target demographic for Urban Art Center.
Prior to becoming the art center it is now, Greenleaf’s efforts were generally focused on adults.
“The goal is to teach different outlets in the realm of art for families and youth and individuals and adults — and really everybody who has a heart or who has a passion for it,” Greenleaf said. “Since we had the space, we just felt like there was so much more that we could do with the community for the space and that’s how the community center came about.”
The arts center has multiple offerings designed to help tap into their creativity. Traditional avenues like painting, poetry and music are in the mix as well as dance, podcasting, audiobook recording, comedy and many other ways to spark creativity.
“Everything is art focused. There’re so many different art forms out there, and with all of the health benefits of art, and being creative in general, we just feel like it’s something that the community definitely needs from all age groups,” she said.
The space embodies the community aspect with its walls decorated with community artwork. Urban Cultural Arts also serves as a middle ground to sell work from local artists. Every piece of art on the wall is for sale — the proceeds go to the artist.
“We have a gallery. We have a lot of different people from the area come in and they may paint or give us some of their art to display,” The system is they come in and they see the space, they love the space, they ask us about the art on the wall,” Greenleaf said. “If someone comes in and they purchase them, the proceeds return to the artist.”
Everything in the center, from the furniture to the décor, is set up without rhythm to foster an organic feeling of creativity for its patrons and participants in its programs.
The Urban Cultural Art and Events Center is open Monday-Saturday from 10:00 am – 10:00 pm. Its full list of its exhibits and programs can be found on the Urban Art Center’s website.