Dear Tina & lovely friends~
After reading Tina’s post yesterday about supporting the arts I thought I would share some exciting news of support in the arts within the town of Westerly, RI where I have my studio. I am fortunate to be a part of a wonderful community of artists through the Artists’ Cooperative Gallery of Westerly. Our gallery just moved to a newly renovated, nostalgic space almost four times the size of where we were!!!
(notes from ACGOW’s website)
The gallery has been transformed from the former Montgomery Ward Building adjacent to the historic United Theatre. Both buildings are owned by The Westerly Land Trust as part of its urban revitalization program. There are plans to further revive the downtown and its historic buildings by focusing developmental growth in this already urbanized area. “These efforts to create a more vibrant town center will, in effect, allow preservation of outlying natural areas currently under development pressure,” said Kelly Presley, Executive Director of the Westerly Land Trust. She added, “After moving our WLT office downtown, I became better acquainted with ACGOW when they used WLT’s Industrial Trust building as gallery space for their past two annual auctions and during monthly art stroll nights. Through these events, we have developed a wonderful partnership that has now led to this fabulous opportunity. WLT is so very pleased to have this group of talented artists move in and bring life to a currently vacant space on Canal Street.
The Artists Cooperative Gallery of Westerly has displayed art at the same location at 12 High Street for almost two decades. The move will combine excitement with nostalgic shock for many of the Gallery’s friends and supporters and also its members. Mary Anne Sherman, the galleries president said her thoughts on signing the new lease included both. “We’re going to be able to do so much more; include more artists, have larger and more varied exhibits and more workshops. ACGOW is really a unique organization and I’m so proud to see it grow and to be part of the revitalization of that part of downtown. It’s a little bittersweet leaving our home of over 19 years but hopefully it just means that now there’s another space available for more art galleries to come into town.”
This month we have two featured artists, Sadie Davidson DeVore and Joshua Prescott as well as student artists from Stonington High School to kick off the opening of our new gallery. If you are in the area, you won’t want to miss the show at 7 Canal Street, Westerly, RI.
It is my dream to further the discussion Tina started and collectively look for ways to show support of the arts so more galleries continue to thrive. Please leave any suggestions you may have in either of our posts, or better yet, make a contribution to a gallery or support an artist by purchasing their work. After all, what would life be like without the arts?
Cheery love, Laura