Arts on the Block (AOB) empowers youth to shape their futures and join the creative workforce.

Through hands-on experiences in the arts and entrepreneurial training, AOB opens new pathways for learning, self-discovery, and achievement. As a nonprofit arts organization in Montgomery County, AOB has one of the longest-standing visual art apprenticeship programs in the region, providing youth with opportunities to delve into art, design, and business through real-world public art commissions. We actively recruit, train, and support individuals with artistic talents, broadening access to entry-level jobs and career paths within the creative industries.

The Apprentice Program has impacted 1,000+ young creatives in Maryland and DC.
Learn more about The Apprentice Program
More than 200 impactful public and private art commissions created.
View our portfolio
Since 2020, 200+ K-8 students benefitted from AOB's arts enrichment program.
Learn more about our Youth Arts Movement program
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Our History

Founded in 2003, Arts on the Block began as a creative entrepreneurship program called “Pour Your Art Out.” In 2007, Artpreneurs, Inc. was formed and adopted the trade name Arts on the Block. By July 2009, AOB became an independent 501(c)3 nonprofit. In 2012, we expanded our programs to include high school and middle school age groups in multiple locations.

Today, AOB operates a working mosaic studio in Downtown Silver Spring. Here we produce commissions seen throughout the region, offer various hands-on workshops, and provide direct service programs to high school, middle school, and more recently, elementary school youth in Montgomery County, MD.

The mission of AOB has remained steadfast throughout our 20 years. We provide dynamic, hands-on training and experience in the field of visual arts for young people to learn, connect with each others, and grow their creative skills.

Jan Goldstein


Carien head shot 2017

Carien Quiroga 

Founding Teaching Artist

Our People

At Arts on the Block, our people are the heartbeat of our mission. Comprising a diverse community of artists, educators, mentors, and supporters, we come together with a shared passion for empowering the next generation of creative leaders. Together, our people form a vibrant and inclusive community united by a shared belief in the transformative power of the arts. Through collaboration, mentorship, and advocacy, we strive to create a world where every young person has the opportunity to explore, create, and thrive. 

Learn more about AOB

Join us in celebrating 20 years of creative youth earning and learning while building community!

Learn more about the influences and values that shape our Teaching Philosophy.

Read about our commitment to furthering and developing racial equity within our community and beyond.

Learn about our programs, including YAM, Studio Crew, and our flagship arts apprenticeship program TAP.  Visit our year in review page to see what our young creatives have accomplished since 2018! 

See selected community and public artworks from AOB and find them on our interactive map!