The Gallery X Documentation Project…

Supported in part by an ARTnet/Wicked Cool Places grant

JUNE 20, 2024

IN-FOCUS ARTICLE: The Gallery X Documentation Project…

The Artists Index Website Project was co-founded and launched in July 2012 by Ron Fortier and Jeff Wotton as a collaborative community digital archive focused on documenting the history of the creative community of the South Coast; its artists, art institutions, and art professionals of the past and present.

The Index is a part of The Artists Indexs collaborative community digital archive and is still under construction. It is an organic biographical directory of Visual, Performing, Literary, and Culinary Artists from the South Coast‘s past to the present. It is a directory listing the historical and contemporary artists of the connected creative communities of the South Coast of Massachusetts.

The artist’s biographies, backgrounds, passions, dreams, and accomplishments will be documented in The Index. It was inspired by Mary Jean Blasdale, the curator of the New Bedford Whaling Museum until her retirement in 2006, it will provide a reliable resource for researchers, genealogists, and educators. The Artists of New Bedford: A Biographical Dictionary published in 1990. The Index is an independent continuation of her work.

The Artists Index was recently awarded a grant to launch the Gallery X Documentation Project. It is supported, in part, by an ARTnet/Wicked Cool Places grant funded by the City of New Bedford through the American Rescue Plan Awards and its Arts, Culture & Tourism Fund, and is facilitated by New Bedford Creative at the NBEDC.

The Gallery X Documentation Project is the first phase of an agenda to scan Gallery Xs entire collection of documents including news clippings, posters, flyers, photographs, and more. The scanned documents will be archived and later mined for information specific to the artists who have had their work exhibited or who have performed at the City’s oldest continually operating cooperative art gallery.

The gallery was founded in 1990 and is a contemporary, cooperative art gallery of visual, performing, and literary artist members and volunteers. Gallery X has served as an incubator for emerging artists and it continues to be a venue for established artists. It is a platform for local artists, performers, and creatives of all ages, skill levels, and backgrounds to showcase their talents as an integral part of the South Coast‘s community.

A multi-episode podcast series is being produced to support and document the Gallery X Documentation Project and record the discoveries made. These podcasts will also reach out to listeners and anyone who seeks information about a historical or contemporary artist from the creative community of the South Coast.

Building The Index requires constantly seeking information and prime examples of each listed artist’s creative work for documentation and to create an excellent resource for scholars, genealogists, and non-artists alike. The Index is committed to the present and passionate about the past. It continues to grow as a reference tool focused on the VisualPerformingLiterary, and Culinary ArtistsCommunity Art LeadersArt Organizations, and Art Industry Professionals of the South Coast.

In each episode, listeners will be encouraged to come forward and share their memories, anecdotes, and supportive evidence about the forgotten, undocumented, and unheralded voices of the historical artists who lived, worked, or were educated here as part of The Artists Index’s continuing efforts to honor the lives, professions, and contributions of the artists to the South Coast‘s cultural and creative community.

It is an excellent opportunity for any artist ready to contribute their story as well as family members, friends, or acquaintances, of any forgotten or undocumented artist, whether contemporary or historical, to bookmark their place in history!

Our gracious sponsors invite you to celebrate the art of life of the creative communities of the South Coast!