The Nest Arts Factory

The Nest Arts Factory

1720 Fairfield Ave
Bridgeport, CT
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Artists of the Nest Arts Factory

The NEST Arts Factory is a community of artists and musicians working in a wide variety of media in a re-imagined factory building on the west side of Bridgeport, Connecticut. Built at the beginning of the last century during Bridgeport’s heyday as the premier manufacturing center of the United States as a factory to construct automobile and limousine bodies, the building that currently houses the NEST Arts Factory has been over its long history an industrial scale factory, a jewelry manufacturer, an aerosol can factory, a manufacturer of artillery detonators during WWII, and most recently a sock factory before becoming the vibrant and diverse artist community that it is today.

In addition to participating in the annual Bridgeport Art Trail, the nearly 40 artists and musicians of the NEST Arts Factory host Open Studios events for the public six times per year in March, April, May, September October, and November. NEST artists work in a wide variety of media from painting, drawing, and sculpture to ceramics, fiber, and jewelry, and are delighted to share their work and explain their inspiration and process. NEST musicians play in an array of genres including classic baroque, acoustic folk, latin, alternative rock, and reggae.

Located in the heart of the NEST, the NEST Arts Factory Gallery hosts 6 art exhibitions a year, a mix of invitational and juried exhibits, showcasing national, regional, and local established and emerging artists. Open space within the NEST allow both performing and visual artists to share their work with the community. The NEST offers several communal spaces ideal for art workshops, music release parties, art events, and more. Contact us for more information and rates. The Colombian Hot Dog food truck will be stationed outside the NEST Arts Factory both Saturday and Sunday during the Art Trail, so come enjoy Juan’s good eats!

Ample onsite and street parking is available for all events.

Nest artists and musicians will have their studios open all weekend and welcome visitors to stop by, ask questions, talk about the classics and new trends, learn something new, see and hear dynamic new artwork being made and performed, and much more.

2017 Bridgeport Art Trail Programming:

Art at the NEST Arts Factory

Event: Open Studios

Friday, November 10; 5 to 9 pm
Saturday, November 11; 10 am to 5 pm
Sunday, November 12; 11 am to 4 pm

Meet the artists of the NEST Arts Factory. Tour the open studios, listen to musicians, enjoy a gallery show, and see a variety of demonstrations. Art on view and for sale includes acrylic and oil painting, sculpture, drawings, collage, jewelry, ceramics, mixed-media, fiber, decorative painting, and much more.
Admission: Free

Event: NEST Art Demonstrations

Watch a variety of NEST Arts Factory artists demonstrate how they create and learn something new! Free admission for all demonstrations. Demos last about 15-20 minutes each.

Saturday, November 11

12 pm Natural Living Benefits of Coconuts demonstration with Gussie Bradford
1 pm Portrait Painting demonstration with Denis Dalesio
2 pm How Do You Get That Green? Color Mixing demonstration with Denise Susalka
3 pm Multi-dimensional Stencil Techniques demonstration with Susan Taylor Murray of Finished with Style

Sunday, November 12

1 pm The Making of Mystical Mandala demonstration with Barbara Dierolf
2 pm Thread-Sketch Contour Drawing demonstration with Jane Davila
3 pm Upcycled Paper Bead Making demonstration with Christina Blais

Event: ARTISTS TALK with the Cultural Alliance of Fairfield County

Friday, November 10; 6 to 8 pm

The Cultural Alliance of Fairfield County brings its ARTISTS TALK series to the Bridgeport Art Trail by visiting three NEST artists (Carlos Davila, Lauren Rago, and Rick Shaefer) included in Silvermine Art Center’s recent Art of the Northeast exhibition, in their studios at the NEST Arts Factory. ARTISTS TALK is a series of video-recorded short talks by artist members of the Cultural Alliance about their work in select group and juried shows. The videos will create an archive of member artists’ talks on the Cultural Alliance YouTube channel and website – an asset for our artists and a showcase for the richness of the visual arts in the County.

Event: 10 x 10 Art Exhibit Opening Reception

Friday, November 10; 5 to 8 pm

Celebrate and support the arts in Bridgeport with the annual NEST Arts Factory fundraiser. The opening reception for the 10 x 10 exhibition is Friday night and the exhibition and sale continues on Saturday and Sunday. All works are 10” square and all are $100 each. Start or add to your art collection! This is a fantastic opportunity to purchase work that is worth well more than $100 while helping both the exhibiting artists and the NEST Arts Factory during this unique fundraiser. Come early for the best selection!

Event: Opening Reception for NEST Associate Member Exhibit in the Passageway Gallery

Friday, November 10; 5 to 8 pm

Work by the Associate Members of the NEST is on view and for sale. Media includes painting, watercolor, photography, fiber, and mixed media art. The exhibit continues Saturday and Sunday and through November 30.

Yoga at the NEST Arts Factory

Begin your Art Trail day at the NEST Arts Factory in a yoga workshop guided by Kristen Ambrosi, RYT-500.

Event: Mindful Flow Community Yoga Class

Saturday, November 11; 10 to 11 am

This free community class will introduce and incorporate breath work, gentle stretching, and a mindful flow adaptable for all levels. Appropriate for both seasoned and new practitioners, this practice will leave you feeling grounded, strengthened, and open in body, mind and spirit.

Music at NEST Arts Factory

Listen to the sounds of the NEST Arts Factory with up-close-and-personal performances by our resident and visiting musicians. Free admission to all musical events.

Event: Bridgeport Baroque

Friday, November 10; 8 to 9 pm

Acclaimed musicians Owen Burdick and Richard Wyton lead an evening of “Bridgeport Baroque”, classical music from the 17th and 18th centuries on harpsichord, recorder, and transverse flute.

Free admission, refreshments served.

Event: Acoustic Guitar with John Cloonan

Sunday, November 12; 10 am to 12 pm

Enjoy the sounds of the big band era and classic rock and roll with John Cloonan live during the brunch at the NEST on Sunday morning. For a preview of John’s music, visit

Event: Rhythms in Community Building, a Drumming Circle with Asher Delerme

Sunday, November 12; 1 to 2 pm

A creative drumming circle workshop with Asher Delerme. Join a stimulating and interactive drum circle and discover the power of creativity and community.

No experience necessary, instruments provided.

Event: Live at the NEST concert with Rick Reyes

Sunday, November 12; 5 pm to 6 pm

Join songwriter and musician Rick Reyes in an intimate performance of Latin music, infused with his unique blend of Caribbean, jazz, and rock influences.

Poetry at NEST Arts Factory

Event: Outspoken at the NEST

Sunday, November 12; 5 to 6 pm

Join us for an afternoon of poetry featuring Iyaba Ibo Mandingo and guests. There will be an open mic preceding the features for any poets wishing to share their work.

The author’s books will be available for purchase during the event.

Film at the NEST Arts Factory

Event: Film “The Helping Hands of Contemporary Art”

Saturday, November 11; 6:30 to 7:30 pm

Cap your Saturday evening with popcorn and a movie at the NEST! Increasingly, contemporary art is the result of a collective effort. This documentary follows the production of three works from conception to completion. These include Korean artist Lee Ufan’s large scale work of boulders and metal sheets installed in the Versailles Palace Gardens; Norwegian conceptual artist Marianne Heske’s giant bronze doll head placed in the Torshovdalen Park in Oslo; and French artist Daniel Buren’s children’s blocks exhibited at the Strasbourg Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art. BYOB plus popcorn and snacks will be served. Free admission.

Food, Gifts, & Sales at NEST Arts Factory

Event: Art Brunch

Sunday, November 12; 10 am to 12 pm

A fabulous way to start the day on Sunday – art and food! Join us for a Mexican-themed artist brunch. Hang out with the artists of the NEST Arts Factory and discuss art, life, creativity, and more while sampling tasty treats in a classic art salon style gathering.

$5 suggested donation per person.

Event: Voter Registration and Civic Information

Saturday, November 11; 10 am to 5 pm
Sunday, November 12; 10 am to 5 pm

Bridgeport Generation Now, a grassroots social action network dedicated to boosting civic engagement in our city, will be hosting a voter registration drive on Saturday and Sunday at the NEST during the Art Trail this year, as well as providing information about local issues that affect the arts and the communities of Bridgeport. For more information please visit

Event: NEST Gift Shop

Friday, November 10; 5 to 8 pm
Saturday, November 11; 11 am to 5 pm
Sunday, November 12; 10 am to 5 pm

The NEST Gift Shop is the perfect place to pick up notecards, calendars, fine art and reproduction prints, small paintings and sculptures, scarves, t-shirts, jewelry, furniture, home décor accessories, and more from your favorite NEST Arts Factory artists. Plus find a full range of local Red Bee Honey products and NEST branded merchandise like mugs and tote bags.

Event: One Bobbin Art Trail Tag Sale, Studio #1

Friday, November 10; 6  to 9 pm
Saturday, November 11; 10 am to 5 pm
Sunday, November 12; 11 am to 4 pm

“Make Room” sale: 25% off last year’s work!

Event: Kristen Ambrosi Studio Sale, Studio #15

Friday, November 10; 5 to 8 pm
Saturday, November 11; 11 am to 5 pm
Sunday, November 12; 10 am to 5 pm

Art Trail studio visitors have exclusive access to the 2018 Commission Schedule! Reserve a signature painting created by Kristen Ambrosi per your specifications. Sign up for upcoming workshops or lessons in art or yoga, or purchase an original gallery-wrapped canvas, discounted for Art Trail weekend.

Event: Kristin Merrill Studio Sale, Studio #18

Friday, November 10; 5 to 8 pm
Saturday, November 11; 10 am to 5 pm
Sunday, November 12; 10 am to 5 pm

20% off necklaces including original pieces that combine precious gems, pearls, and metals with found objects. One-of-a-kind sterling silver necklaces are also included in the sale. Visit for a preview of her work.

Event: Sweetwater Studio Annual Sale, Studio #21

Friday, November 10; 5 to 8 pm
Saturday, November 11; 10 am to 5 pm
Sunday, November 12; 10 am to 5 pm

Fine art paintings and semi-precious stone jewelry, specially priced for the Bridgeport Art Trail. Sweetwater is known for landscape paintings filled with exquisite color and light.

Event: Barbara Dierolf’s Mandala Annual Studio Sale, Studio #22

Friday, November 10; 5 pm to 8 pm
Saturday, November 11; 10 am to 5 pm
Sunday, November 12; 10 am to 5 pm

Art Trail special includes 20% off all jewelry; selection of $5 tee shirts while they last; 25% off all unframed art. These prices only apply while supply lasts. Be sure to sign up for an ice-dyeing workshop with Barbara.

Event: Jane Davila Annual Studio Sale, Studio #30

Friday, November 10; 5 pm to 8 pm
Saturday, November 11; 10 am to 5 pm
Sunday, November 12; 10 am to 5 pm

A selection of original fine art, hand block-printed pillows and purses, collage jewelry, scarves, lamps, wallpaper, and more are offered at once-a-year discounted prices. When you visit, sign up for a surface design or printmaking studio workshop or for the artists’ mentorship group.

Preview online at