Welcome to Art Department!
Art Department is a fiercely independent, woman-owned art supply store in the heart of downtown Salem, Oregon. Art Department's mission is to support artists from inspiration to celebration.
The Art Department offers:
- Classes and workshops that inspire
- Quality, name brand supplies that empower
- Shows, events, contests, and gallery space that celebrates the art community and its artists.
You can depend on our highly knowledgeable and friendly staff. Our team members are also artists and can help assist you with product recommendations, trouble-shooting, and we love hearing of your recent creative endeavors.
Olivia Sweeney has lived in Salem for most of their life. They love mixed media art, and their pieces usually include charcoal, ink, and oil pastels. Olivia is especially a fan of art that integrates empowerment, voice, and expression and believes that art can be a powerful tool for change.
Olivia has attended classes at Southern Oregon University and taken pottery classes in the community. They enjoy being outside, being creative, and being creative outside. Olivia is a Scorpio.
Bella Ramey is a graduate from South Salem High School and has lived in Salem since 2005. Inspired by western animation and graphic novels, she is a stylized artist who works in many types of media including but not limited to digital, watercolor, and graphite. She enjoys telling stories through her art and always has ideas brewing in the back of her head. Her art has been shown in the Art Association’s young artist showcase, Art Association’s High School Art Mentorship Program Exhibition, and South Salem High School’s IB visual art show.
Jessica Ramey is a creative goof who loves to play and geek out over anything artsy. She loves artful play but also likes organizing community art events. Some projects she has worked on include: Repair Fair & Share, Free Art Friday, DIY Studio (Salem's first creative reuse center), Community Swaps, Salem Puppet Parade, Trashion, Community Supported Arts&Culture, and Salem Sketchers.
Her passion for art drew her to the University of Oregon where she graduated with a Fine Arts degree with an emphasis on Visual Design. After that, she worked as a marketing coordinator at the University of Oregon. In 2005, she moved to Salem and started teaching free community craft nights and in 2010, she opened DIY Studio in her home studio. In 2012, DIY Studio morphed into a non-profit creative reuse center in Salem, Oregon. Then in April of 2014, DIY Studio closed its doors and Jessica moved on to work full-time to promote waste reduction in Marion County. In 2020, Jessica's dreams came true and she purchased Art Department from Katy and Jim Vigeland. She is thrilled to share her passion of art with you and looks forward finding ways to make the world a better place through art.
In 1974, Bill and Joyce Osborne opened Creative Cache, a store that offered tole painting supplies then morphed into selling art and office supplies. This was the era before desktop computers and printing and the supply store sold lots of rub-on letters and boards and paste for hand made presentations.
In 1994, Katy and Jim Vigeland purchased Creative Cache and coined it Art Department, Inc. Both grew up in Salem and are South Salem High and U of O graduates.
Katy and Jim moved the store from 145 Liberty to Commercial and then to the current location at 254 Commercial Street.
Jim and Katy have been extremely community-minded since the business began. They have donated time, money, and materials to Salem Keizer Public Schools, Salem Art Fair, SAA, Keizer Art Assn, Kroc Center, Artists in Action, Capitol Calligraphers, Boys and Girls Club, and countless other organizations. They also showed customers' artwork in monthly art exhibits with First Wednesday receptions, offered a full schedule of art classes, and created the annual mini canvas show.