The Crucible inspires creative exploration and expression through welcoming, hands-on arts education, and experiences for people of diverse ages and backgrounds. As an innovative nonprofit hub built around the industrial arts, The Crucible is a catalyst for individual growth and vibrant community connections. A leader in the Bay Area arts community, The Crucible is recognized for exceptional learning experiences, rich and varied arts programs, skilled and committed faculty, and amazing educational facilities.
The Crucible has more than 20 different classroom areas or studios. During regular operations, we serve over 25,000 people a year in hundreds of youth and adult classes, ranging from neon to blacksmithing, and support entrepreneurial career pathways for local youth and adults. The Crucible is one of the largest employers of working artists in the Bay area, with a faculty of over 130 artists and craftspeople, about 30 staffers, and a commitment to equitable pay, equity, inclusion, and power-sharing. We are evolving our organization to make sure we reflect and are led by those we serve and are proud to have former youth leaders and local community members as staff, faculty, and in leadership.
The Crucible first opened in January 1999 as a warehouse in West Berkeley stretching over 6000 square feet. A grant of $1,750 made it possible for sculptor Michael Sturtz to start the organization, imagining an innovative hub for the industrial arts and education. The studio began with just 11 classes, and Sturtz taught seven of them himself. Sturtz wanted The Crucible to be a creative outlet accessible to everyone, promoting creative expression, reuse of materials, and innovative design.
The Crucible relocated to West Oakland in 2003, and since then, has grown to become the largest nonprofit industrial arts education facility in the country, where art thrives, inspires, and is accessible. As part of celebrating and empowering Oakland, The Crucible offers free programming, scholarships, and paid leadership opportunities for youth and adults who live locally and otherwise could not participate.
For more information on The Crucible, please visit www.thecrucible.org