Salem Arts Association, Inc. is an entirely volunteer-run nonprofit arts organization.
In our mission statement, the stress is on the arts, plural. Artists working in all media and all disciplines are welcome, as are arts lovers, enthusiasts, and patrons.
Salem Arts Association is located in the historic Derby Street neighborhood of Salem Massachusetts.
The House of the Seven Gables and the Salem Maritime Historic Site are two busy sites for tourists and residents alike. We’re housed right between them. Our neighborhood also shares popular restaurants, shops, Pickering Wharf, and nearby Blaney Pier with the Salem Ferry and cruise ship docks.
Since incorporating as a non-profit corporation on August 31, 2007, the entirely volunteer-run Salem Arts Association has produced hundreds of exhibits, events, and workshops, Nearly all free of charge to Salem’s residents and visitors. To date, Salem Arts programming has reached over 80,000 visitors. This has been made possible in part through collaborations with numerous local businesses and organizations, including many local businesses including the Salem Cultural Council, Massachusetts Cultural Council, the City of Salem, the Peabody Essex Museum, the Salem Chamber of Commerce, Salem Main Streets, Creative Collective MA, The House of the Seven Gables, Salem National Historic Site, and Salem State University.
In its first collaboration, in the summer of 2007, the SAA partnered with Salem State’s Campus Center Arts Program to launch sass:C – a collaborative gallery of art and craft as part of the City’s Artists’ Row program. In 2008, the SAA expanded on this idea and, going it alone this time, successfully operated the Salem Arts Association Gallery, again in Salem’s Artists’ Row, increasing sales, memberships, and volunteer commitments. In recognition of these auspicious beginnings, the Salem Chamber of Commerce nominated the Salem Arts Association for the 2007 Community Service Award, and the Salem Cultural Council named the Salem Arts Association as Artist of the Year in 2008. Salem Arts operated seasonally on Artists' Row through 2014.
In 2015 Salem Arts moved to a space on Salems Essex Street Walking Mall. In this space, known as the Salem Art Center (SAC), we shared exhibition space with another Salem artist group and offered expanded retail, gallery, and educational opportunities to the community of Salem and visitors from around the world.
In 2017, our tenth year, Salem Arts found a new home at “The Bridge at 211” in Salem, MA. This facility provided the Salem Arts Association with excellent gallery exhibition space, a gallery shop, workshop area, and event facilities.
2020 brings our latest growth opportunity with our move to 159 Derby Street. This historic neighborhood places our gallery amongst Salem's most popular sites including the House fo the Seven Gables and Salem's Maritime Historic Site.
Salem Arts President James Bostick says "This is a very exciting time for Salem Arts. The creative roots of the Salem Arts Association community have grown and prospered over the past decade thanks to the dedication of our artists and volunteers. Our new space, growing group of artists, and continued support of the Salem community will allow Salem Arts to continue to advance. We look forward to an exciting future in the historic Derby Street neighborhood offering outstanding exhibitions in the galleries, educational workshops, and other events and performances to delight our members and supporters."
Salem Arts membership has grown from 12 individuals who met in March of 2007 to discuss the formation of an association to currently serve over 250 members, including more than 180 regional artists who will exhibit their artwork in our galleries and shop. Salem Arts also offers Memberships for people who wish to support the mission of the Salem Arts Association but do not consider themselves to be artists.
When visiting the Salem Arts Association at 159 Derby Street Admittance to the gallery is always free.