After 27 years in the same location, Asheville Gallery of Art is looking for a new home. AGA will lose its lease at 16 College Street at the end of the year. The property is owned by Parsec Financial who will use the space to expand their offices.
Founded as a co-operative in 1988, AGA is Asheville’s longest-established downtown gallery. The 28 local artists of AGA are co-owners who not only display their work throughout the gallery, but also take care of all responsibilities and duties of running the business. Members serve on committees that handle the day-to-day jobs of finance, advertising, housekeeping, selecting new members, and staffing the gallery during business hours.
The artists of AGA strive to promote Asheville art. When visitors walk in, one of the member artists greets them and remains available to answer any questions they might have about the pieces they see. This friendly, hands-on approach to viewing and purchasing art actively connects visitors to working artists and offers a glimpse into Asheville’s thriving artistic community.
AGA features a remarkable diversity of styles and vision. Traditional landscapes hang side-by-side with expressive abstracts, whimsical mixed-media paintings, figurative works, and still lifes. Along with original paintings in oil, pastel, watercolor, and acrylic, AGA also features artists’ reproductions and a colorful array of note cards.
Admission into the gallery is through a rigorous jury process. When AGA has openings in membership, the gallery calls for 2-D artists to apply and submit paintings for review. AGA’s jury committee selects members based on refined craftsmanship, diversity in styles, and professionalism. There are no limits to style or paint medium, as long as the body of work meets the gallery’s high standards, and the artist has a contribution to make to AGA. The gallery currently has a waiting list of juried artists from this region.
Sahar Fakhoury, current AGA president, says, “The success of AGA lies in our incredible members who have a passion for creating high-quality art as well as an ongoing commitment to marketing and selling their paintings to a discriminating public. The gallery’s longevity, unique to Asheville, is possible through proven business practices that accommodate change and growth. ”
If you or anyone you know has space to lease, AGA would appreciate hearing from you. Please contact Karen Brown, AGA relocation liaison, at 828-231-0617.