A long history of bringing Art to the Greater Fall River Community

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history

The Greater Fall River Art Association was officially founded in 1956 by a group of people interested in bringing to our community a greater awareness and deeper understanding of the visual arts.  The organizing members met at the late Edelweiss French's home in Swansea to form the association. Those present at that meeting, over 50 years ago, were John Marshall, Ethel Fuller, Gudrun Lawson, Eleanor Brady, Albert and Clara Stewart, Angus BaileyAnn McCulloch, Edmund St. Laurent, Eleanor Dunlop, Gloria Poole and Barbara Alpert. James Waldren drew up the by-laws and signed the charter at the building across the street from the YMCA on Pine St. The first national show was held in 1957 and the first regional showing 1965.

The present art association building at 80 Belmont Street in Fall River was purchased in 1963 from Dr David Pollin for $8,000.  A.H. Leeming built it for Charles Cole in 1904.  The art association held a capital fund and paid for the building in two years.  It remains a beautiful building and has a spacious first floor with a reception hall, double parlors, dining room and kitchen. These rooms are used for exhibitions and events.  The second floor has a classroom, three resident artist studios and the WPA Gallery containing a rare collection of Depression Era paintings.  Our third floor has two additional resident artist studios, and office space shared by the GFRAA and the Fall River Preservation Society .

IThe GFRAA serves as a community of working artists renting studios in our historic building.  If you would like to visit or be considered for studio space contact by email: PresidentGFRAA@gmail.com