(NEWARK, NJ) -- Gallery Aferro has announced a new triad leadership structure with Gallery Manager Candace Nicholson taking on a new role as Gallery Director, joining Co-Founder and Artistic Director Evonne M. Davis and Co-Founder Emma Wilcox as a partner in the creative management of the 18-year arts organization.
Nicholson, with a multi-decade background in publishing and marketing, will team with Davis to expand Gallery Aferro's longtime role in the arts ecosystem as a community-responsive and experimental artist-run space. Originally opened in Newark’s Ironbound neighborhood in 2003, Gallery Aferro has always been committed to serving as a platform for the exchange of ideas in service of advancing human dignity and beauty, with a focus on visual, literary and sound art. The goal of the new leadership structure is to allow for this vision to not only continue during a critical moment in our nation’s artistic landscape, but to also flourish in a time of constant change.
"Since the beginning, my aim with Aferro has been to explore what it means to create and share a platform. The kind of work we've done over the past 18 years reflects the voices of so many people, each of whom has shaped what we are, and kept us changing and growing," explains Davis.
Co-Founder Emma Wilcox will continue serving as a voice in Gallery Aferro’s leadership with the new title of Executive Director, supporting strategic research and development for programming and initiatives expressing Aferro's mission and unique ethos. "Candace has sensitivity to the local and global, and shares our deep and abiding interest and care for a diverse range of creative experiences for all people,” Wilcox explains. “She also has the analytical tendencies befitting a proudly alternative space."
With an appreciation for the integration of creativity, community and conscious healing, Nicholson looks forward to working with the leadership team to maintain Aferro’s vision while maneuvering through a (post)pandemic transition, as well as encouraging discourse on important topics that affect artists and art lovers alike.
“For years, I’ve supported the arts as a means to connect, heal and thrive in a culture that views the creative community as expendable and unnecessary. Yet, throughout the lockdown, we saw millions turning to the arts and entertainment industry to help maintain their mental health and keep them connected to their friends, families, neighbors, and yes, even strangers,” Nicholson continues. “I don’t want to see that lesson go unlearned. So in this role, I hope to blaze more accessible, more inclusive, more visible trails for artists and arts advocacy, in addition to building on Aferro’s legacy in Newark and beyond.”
Gallery Aferro is an artist-owned alternative arts space located in the heart of Newark, New Jersey’s downtown district at 73 Market Street. Founded in 2003, it is home to two major public exhibition spaces in a 20,000 sq. ft. building at 73 Market Street, offering exhibitions, events, and a studio residency program available all year-round.