Art for the Soul Gallery strives to promote understanding and inspire an appreciation of the achievements, contributions, and experiences of diverse artists as they exist throughout the world; through exhibits, programs, and activities that illustrate historical, political, and social passage through present day.
Founded in 1999, Art for the Soul Gallery began when two friends, Stella Butler and current AFTS Executive Director, Rosemary "Tracy" Woods decided to take their art house-parties to the next level and open a gallery. Art for the Soul Gallery at the Classical location was born and has been growing since.
In 2011, a group of artists came together to form Artists Square Group Gallery at the Tower Square location. Tracy managed the gallery until it closed in 2015 and reopened it as a second location for Art for the Soul Gallery.
After receiving its 501(c)3 designation in July 2015, Tracy Woods met with local professionals and the decision was made to change the model for Art for the Soul Gallery. Thus, the Tower Square location closed its doors and renovations began.
After months of renovation, the gallery reopened with Ten Little Nigger Girls: A Works-in-Progress/Open Studio Exhibition, with Dr. Imo Nse Imeh. The exhibition ran from November 6, 2015 until January 16, 2016. As provocative (and offensive) as the title may be to some, the exhibition set record-breaking attendance, as well as having four institutions (Art History, Westfield State University, Cambridge College, UMass Arts Department and STCC Fine Arts Department) join in open discussion and a special reception and discussion with the Healing Racism Institute of Pioneer Valley.
Art for the Soul Gallery is looking forward to a new year. We will be renovating the Classical location and provide opportunities for serious artists to rent the space so that they can exhibit and sell their work. Artists need more a space to share their work with the world. We, at Art for the Soul Gallery, will strive to provide that space for artists.