An arts association is not just a place for professional artists—it’s a place for artists at all stages of their journey to explore their creativity. At MAA, both members and non-members have several opportunities each year to exhibit, regardless of where they are in exploring their craft.
Every year, two open shows give nonmembers a chance to exhibit. Many times, artists then apply for membership and are juried in. Members receive a multitude of benefits, including discounted activities, gallery showings, and show promotion.
Local artists still tied to day jobs can take advantage of these terrific opportunities. For example, Terry Slater, who’s currently exhibiting at the association, is director of interactive media and design at Montserrat College of Art in Beverly, Mass. Because of her job, Slater only has time to create art on weekends, if at all.
As an artist who must fit her art in around her job, Slater finds her MAA membership valuable for the sense of community, the chance to meet other artists, and the exposure of her work. A member since she moved here from New York years ago, this is her second show at MAA.
A second artist currently on exhibit, Marc Schepens, is another good example. Although not a member, Schepens was given the opportunity to show at MAA through his connection to acclaimed artist Norman Laliberte, who exhibited at the association last spring. Schepens said the MAA show has been a great opportunity, giving him a venue to bring together people from his local community. It has also given him a chance to view his artistic development from graduate school until now.
Schepens teaches painting and drawing at Essex Community College in Haverhill, Mass but makes a point to get in at least 20 hours per week in the studio. He said he sees MAA as an important resource and hopes to someday show in New York and internationally.
Terry Slater’s exhibit Coastal Waters and Marc Schepens’ unnamed exhibit will be showing at MAA until June 8.
The above photo is of Schepens’ creation Pangaea, 2014.