The Arts Council of East Orange has partnered with the artists of Manufacturers Village to assist them in raising funds to pursue our shared goal of preserving the artists community that has become an important cultural hub for the community. The initial funds raised will cover the administrative and legal costs.
Manufacturers Village Artist Studios, located in an 1880’s industrial complex building in East Orange, NJ, seeks state, nonprofit, and/or private sponsorship to ensure its future as a cultural asset to the community of East Orange NJ, and the State of New Jersey. The enclave, the original site of Johnson & Johnson, then known as Seabury & Johnson, houses over sixty artists working in various mediums, including professional painters, sculptors, quilters, printmakers, photographers, multi-media artists and more.
Each October, the Manufacturers Village Artists host an Open Studios event, inviting and inspiring thousands of visitors from the neighborhood and surrounding communities as they explore the wide range of artwork and studio spaces. Since March 2021, Liquitex art materials has been generously operating an on-site residency program in the building that gives under-served artists free studio space and art materials. In addition, the Village is home to one of the nation’s largest Black Lives Matter murals created by sixteen local artists of color in partnership with the Arts Council of East Orange, Pink Dragon Syndicate and with support from the City of East Orange and the donation of the parking lot by Manufacturers Village LLC. The Village has also served as an incubator space for many small businesses, including designers, woodworkers, and startup businesses, with 100% occupancy and a waiting list for space.
“Manufacturers Village is a rare destination, a cultural haven. Not only does it bear over 100 years of history, but it has also nurtured a vast and rich artistic community, not easily replicated with real estate as expensive as it is in New Jersey. Every October, I look forward to the Open Studios event, wandering and exploring the labyrinthine and magical buildings and viewing all of the artist’s work. This place is a cultural gem; in its past and present, it will be for future generations of artists and communities. It is essential to preserve it.”
-- Sarah Walko, Director of Education and Community Engagement at VACNJ
The artists envision a future Manufacturers Village as a regional cultural destination that anchors the neighborhood's position as a thriving arts district, including contemporary art exhibition space, performance space, BLM Sculpture Park, an Expanded Artists’ Residency Program, additional makers’ and business incubators, museum store and restaurants. Visitors and patrons from the surrounding region would bring an influx of economic activity to the local economy.
For more information please visit the Manufacturers Village Website: https://www.manufacturersvillageartists.com/about