HOUSTON (KIAH) Houston’s Community Artists’ Collective has long been a vital part of the city’s arts community, providing a platform for local artists to showcase their work and connect with new audiences. Founded in 1984 by Michelle Barnes, the organization has grown into a dynamic community of artists, educators, and art enthusiasts, committed to using art to address social, economic, and cultural challenges in Houston and beyond.

Thanks to a generous grant from the BIOPIC Arts network & Fund (BANF) in 2022, the Community Artists’ Collective has been able to expand its programming for the community, providing even more opportunities for local artists and residents to engage with the arts. With this funding, the organization has been able to offer new workshops, exhibitions, and events, as well as expand its outreach efforts to underserved communities throughout Houston.

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As an artist, educator, arts administrator and co-founder, Michelle Barnes has been a driving force behind the Collective’s success. Born in Austin and a Houston resident since the 1950s, Ms. Barnes has long been a strong advocate for the African American community of artists. Her vision and leadership have helped to make the Community Artists’ Collective a true catalyst for positive change in Houston’s arts community and beyond.

Through its programs and services, the Community Artists’ Collective is helping to create a more vibrant, diverse, and engaged arts community in Houston, one that is committed to using the power of art to address the complex social, economic, and cultural challenges facing the city today. With the support of organizations like the BANF and the vision of leaders like Michelle Barnes, the Collective is poised to continue making a positive impact in the years to come.