Since inception, the school’s mission is to create an institution in central New Jersey where students can obtain a well-rounded, hands-on arts educational foundation. duCret offers over 50 classes in fine arts along with evening workshops and weekend teen classes. Each instructor is a current professional artist and therefore classes incorporate writing and understanding contracts, marketing, and networking for the development of a thriving career in the arts.
The school fosters community pride through creative events, lectures, workshops, and more. duCret is a community resource center for the arts and hosts open studios, workshops, children's art programs and art shows for the general public throughout the year. The school has made available its all-purpose meeting room for a variety of community groups.
The duCret School of Art is the oldest arts school in the state of New Jersey. Founded in 1926 by artist and teacher Marjorie Van Emburgh, the school was originally located in a large carriage house in a residential area of Plainfield. By 1936 it had outgrown its original quarters and obtained space in the Babcock Building, located in the center of the Plainfield business district. Over the next two decades, the school continued to build a reputation for excellence in art education.
In 1964, the Van Emurgh School of Art was acquired by Dudley V. duCret and became the Van Emburgh/duCret School of Fine and Industrial Art. It was incorporated in 1970 and moved to its current location, the George Strong house in the Van Wyck historic residential section of Plainfield.
Ms. Van Emburgh remained a faculty member until 1975.