Artrain’s mission is to deliver discovery and, through the power of arts and culture, transform lives, organizations and communities. With its award winning community building program at its core, Artrain partners with artists and/or arts and cultural institutions to produce and deliver art-infused outreach programs of all types – art, culture, history, science, environment and more – to people in villages, towns and cities to expand personal horizons and strengthen local cultural infrastructure. Artrain defines community broadly: geographically or as people connected by common interests.
Originally delivering its programs on a museum-on-a-train that used America’s rail system, Artrain retired its rail museum in 2008. Today, Artrain uses a variety of delivery methods.
Since its founding in 1971, Artrain has helped start or strengthen hundreds of cultural organizations. In recognition of its legacy, in 2006 Artrain received the National Medal for Museum Service – the nation’s highest award for institutions that make significant and exceptional contributions to their communities using that extraordinary and innovative approaches to community service.
Artrain has shared award-winning exhibitions and many of the world’s greatest artists with millions of people during hundreds of community visits across the United States and, more recently, Canada. Countless individuals – from schoolchildren to grandparents – have experienced Artrain programs. Many have become art and creative practitioners, consumers, supporters, advocates and/or volunteers.