About the Residency:
Gallery Aferro’s studio residency takes place in 20 studios ranging from 500 – 900 square feet throughout our 5-floor building. Artists accepted into the program are granted entry into their studios 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, for 6 month rotations and gain access to visiting curators, other gallery directors, and inclusion in collaborations with a wide range of organizations including museums, orchestras, and galleries. Gallery Aferro’s centrally located space, with a ground floor exhibition gallery, coupled with Newark’s growing population of artists, makes for a focused center of artistic expression that is constantly engaged with the community.
Gallery Aferro regularly hosts large group tours, open studios, and artist talks, all with the focus of maximizing exposure and interaction between the public and working artists. Many alumni have commented that the building is a kind of context within a context: an evocative 19th-century building in almost ceaseless use by a large, varied and lively population of gallery staff, volunteers, and numerous artists, youth, and community residents, all within the complex, dense context of Newark, New Jersey’s largest city and the nation’s third oldest European settlement.
The studios consist of simple work-only spaces with high ceilings and built-in storage for each studio. The artists have free range over their space and the freedom allotted to them over the way to use their studios encourages incubation of ambitious self-organized projects that might otherwise have not been possible for the artist to achieve. Gallery Aferro focuses on this aspect when choosing artists to participate, as well as commitment to a chosen field, excellence of artwork, demonstrated interest in engaging the public, etc. Providing access to a space for art making to happen synergizes with Gallery Aferro’s mission of encouraging intellectual exchange and maximizing artistic engagement.
The different artists working in our studios range broadly in age, media, temperament, and many other attributes. Local, national, and international artists have participated. To date, four Fulbright fellows, one Joan Mitchell Foundation awardee, and two of Eyebeam’s only female fellows have participated in our studio residency, adding to a growing brain trust of Newark-connected talent. Our dedication to idea sharing and incubation of artistic production has broadened our interest in influences and experiences. As a work space and presenting organization, Gallery Aferro encourages and engages with dedication to process, collaboration, and conceptual development.
Visit the studio blog!
Studio Resident alumni Irys Schenker was interviewed in her studio for TKartspace blog. Asked about the impact of the residency on her work, she responded:
“Absolutely! I have been pining for more space for a while. As soon as I moved in, my mind expanded along with the space… It has special meaning for me since I feel like I can finally breathe in this space. It is incredibly liberating.”