Founded in 1999, Artists Alliance Inc. (AAI) is an artist and curator-centered 501c3 non-profit organization committed to supporting emerging and underrepresented contemporary artists. Through innovative programming, experimentation and collaboration, AAI serves as a resource and forum to engage the community of the Lower East Side. As a local arts organization, we are continually evolving with the changing needs of the artists and curators whom we serve. Through our three principle programs–Cuchifritos Gallery + Project Space, LES Studio Program, Public Work–we create opportunities for discourse, support economic development with cultural activities, and facilitate connections between contemporary art and the broader cultural community.
From the first days working in their studios located in the former PS 160 school building on Suffolk Street (Rivington/Delancey), the member artists worked to improve the building for everyone working there. As the organization matured, this philosophy was advanced by nurturing, supporting, and exhibiting the work of underrepresented and emerging artists and curators and by welcoming the public to directly engage with contemporary visual arts in the Lower East Side. Cuchifritos Gallery + Project Space was established in 2001 to foster a deeper connection between professional artists and the general public, inspired by its unique gallery location within the historically significant Essex Street Market. The mission of Cuchifritos is to act as a forum for exploring fundamental ideas, issues and concerns in contemporary art, to highlight the work of underrepresented artists, and to make a connection with the local community of the Lower East Side through the medium of contemporary art.
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