The Upstate Artists Guild is a not-for-profit volunteer organization, open to all, which promotes the appreciation, practice and enjoyment of art. Our mission is to promote art education and artistic endeavors throughout the community; to maintain a space in which to meet for the purpose of exhibitions, lectures, and instruction; and to work with the community to stimulate an interest in the arts.
The State of Things
The UAG has made its home at 247 Lark Street, Albany, where we maintain our gallery and hold regular classes and workshops. We host monthly gallery exhibitions, interspersed with special events and our Workshop Committee is busy organizing regular classes and workshop sessions. Our excitement about the Capital Region's wealth of artists and resources has quickly spread as other artists, organizations, and businesses have become members or in other ways pledged their support.
Our classes and workshops are aimed at both local artists and the community at large. We hope to hold regular events supporting the community and raising conciousness of the overwhelming amount of quality art created in and around upstate New York. The core group of founders meets weekly while once a month we have an open meeting which all members are invited to attend. Our current members work with a surprisingly wide variety of artistic mediums and we are constantly impressed by the work we see in our gallery.
We are currently looking for more members to help us with our activities and to help fund the gallery. We are pursuing permanent gallery improvements such as proper lighting and signage. In addition we are lending our support and resources to other local events and organizations.
You may also read about our Corporate Structure.
From Humble Beginnings
The Upstate Artists Guild began in early 2004 as Art4Central, an arts group focused on instruction, workshops, and regular figure drawing sessions. The group was pioneered by Nina Stanley and quickly joined by several local artists around the time of Art4Central's open house in July of that year. From this point, the combined energy of the group provided the focus needed to bring about a series of shows, classes, and special events held by Art4Central or in conjunction with other local arts groups.
In mid 2005, due to difficulties with our hard-to-find location, we abandoned the space and began searching for a new home. During our hiatus the group continued to meet regularly, planning our next step and our new image. Luck was with us when we were approached with an opportunity to take over the vacant space at 247 Lark Street -- previously housing Web of Threads, Unchained, and Hot City -- for a one day gallery show to run during Lark Fest. We quickly set to work cleaning and preparing the space for the show. On September 17th, 2005, we unveiled ourselves as the Upstate Artists Guild.
The months following Lark Fest were spent organizing and planning, as we funded our newly acquired space out-of-pocket. With several choice shows and appearances, such as a memorable series of installations at Albany Center Galleries' Menagerie Art Circus, at The Armory in Albany, we were able to keep interest and visual presence high. At the end of the year we were ready to file for official non-profit status and to open our doors in early January, 2006, for our premiere show: SAL on Lark, featuring work by the Student Art League of St. Rose College.
You may also read more about the Guild's Founders.
Throughout our history certain organizations and local businesses have gone above and beyond, repeatedly providing space, resources, and funding, often without ever being asked. We would like to dedicate this space to those who without their help the UAG would not exist.
+ 200 Proof
+ Albany Center Galleries
+ Albany Special Events
+ Antica Enoteca
+ Capital Wines
+ Central Art Supply
+ Gustav at The Honest Weight Food Coop
+ Jimmy John's
+ Lark Street BID
+ Laura Koenecke
+ Mail Boxes Etc.
+ Mike O'Brien
+ Pyramide Realty
+ Red Bull
+ Student Art League of St. Rose College
+ Times Union