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Announcing the Ellen Hardy Memorial Scholarship Program

Monday, June 26, 2017 11:56 AM | James Bostick (Administrator)

The Salem Arts Association is very pleased to announce the The Ellen Hardy Memorial Scholarship. Ellen Hardy was the driving force behind the Salem Arts Association of many years as an early member and as president through 2015. Ellen was instrumental to our growing organization's success and we celebrate her contributions to the arts in Salem.

We at Salem Arts Association were deeply saddened to learn of the passing of our friend Ellen Hardy following her battle with cancer. Ellen was an early Salem Arts Association Member and led the Association as president until 2016. Her mark on the Salem Arts community is profound and she has touched the creative spirit of countless people. Even more profound was her multi-disciplinary artistic talents as a painter, photographer, and performer. Her legacy will be marked by many. 

Among Ellen's countless contributions to Salem Arts was her work to shine a spotlight on Salem's Artist Row during it's earlier years. She worked tirelessly to make the Salem Arts Association the centerpiece of "The Row" through her event planning skills and friendships with Salem's artists and performers who turned our little shanty into a vibrant social experience. 

Ellen was the instrumental catalyst who worked closely with the Peabody Essex Museum to secure our gallery and retail space at 179 Essex St. where we enjoyed huge success that eventually lead us to our current new home at The Bridge at 211. 

In addition to Ellen's dedication to the Salem Arts Association she was a prolific artist. Her multi-disciplinary skill ranged form photography to Painting in En-Plein-Air, collage, construction, and even performance art painting with her beloved ensemble "The Avant-Guardians" and her  "Art Attack" performance events. 

Salem Arts Association owe's a deep debt of gratitude to Ellen Hardy's perseverance and dedication. While we will miss Ellen's enigmatic spirit her legacy will live on through the success of our growing organization. 

On behalf of our Board of Directors and our membership we thank you Ellen. We are pleased to honor your legacy with this scholarship.

Ellen Gibson Hardy (May 18, 1952 — June 18, 2017)

An artist at heart, Ellen forged a career in the Art, Graphic Design, and Publishing world. She founded her own company, Hardy House, which was a full-service Art and Design business of which she was the proprietor for over 19-years working with the likes of MIT, Harvard, Yale, and many other educational and professional organizations. During the years as president of Hardy House she began to exhibit her own artwork at galleries throughout New England and taught Graphic Arts at the Cambridge Adult Center for Education and at Phillips Academy where she also served as Director of Publications for over 14 years.

Ellen was a profound influence on the Salem artistic scene through her involvement with the Salem Public Arts Commission, the annual Salem Arts Festival, and Salem Arts Association, which she advocated heavily for. Ellen served for several years as a member and president of Salem Arts Association.

Award Purpose and Eligibility:

The Ellen Hardy Memorial Scholarship will award one or more scholarships of $500 each spring to a senior-year student attending any Salem school (public, charter, or private) who is pursuing visual arts education either through a university program or through an art school in the fall following their graduation. Visual arts, graphic design, performing arts, music, acting, or other areas of creative expression will be considered. Ellen Hardy was a founding member and served as President of the Salem Arts Association through 2015. She was very active in contributing to the Salem Arts Associations success and was also a prolific artist and performer herself. We are honored to offer this scholarship program in her memory.


If you wish to make a donation in Ellen Hardy's name please indicate in your comment the you wish funds to go to the "Ellen Hardy Memorial Scholarship" when visiting our Donation Page.

For more info, or to apply, please visit our Salem Arts Scholarships page. or email to




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159 Derby Street, Salem MA 01970