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Collectors Gala: Celebrate Creativity

Artspace’s Collectors Gala is here once again! I am always so excited to welcome everyone to this celebration every year. It’s such a reflective time for the staff, as we prepare the building for this festive event and honor all those who play a role in our success.


The Collectors Gala is Artspace’s main fundraising event. All proceeds support Artspace exhibitions, educational programs, community outreach programs for at-risk children and adults, and overall building maintenance.  Sales from the live and silent art auctions directly provide much-needed funding for all that we do for artists and the community.

Since 1986, Artspace has continued to evoke excitement in the community and raise awareness of the visual arts by providing a unique environment where artists can collaborate, where the public can interact with working artists and experience the creative process, and where children and adults can learn to express their own creativity in classes.

Every Year Artspace:

  • Provides 100,000 visitors over 370 exhibitions, programs, services, and events;
  • Inspires more than 30,000 children through educational classes, programs, and scholarship opportunities.
  • Brightens the lives of hundreds of at-risk children through outreach programs.
  • Supports the careers and development of more than 750 emerging and established artists through studio space, exhibitions, and artist services.

artspace_121117_0557The Collectors Gala was created 12 years ago. It has been such a joy to watch it grow from an event with 250 in attendance to over 450 guests and raising $25,000 in 2002 to the $115,000 we raised last year!

Tomorrow night, we celebrate creativity, and I will be celebrating all of the people who choose to invest in Artspace.

Thank you for your inspiration!


About Mary Poole

Mary Poole has served in the role of President of Artspace since 2002. From 1997-2001, she was Grants Officer for Artists & Organizations with the Virginia Commission for the Arts (VCA) in Richmond, VA and Artist Services and Arts Education Consultant with the Illinois Arts Council from 1995-1997. Mary received an MA in Arts Administration from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and a BS in Business Administration from the University of Mary Washington in Fredericksburg, VA. In 2012, she received an Executive Education Certificate from the Harvard Kennedy School for Performance Measurement for Effective Management of Nonprofit Organizations and completed the Junior League of Raleigh’s Capital Leadership Initiative. Mary serves on the planning committee for Innovate Raleigh,and is a member of the Raleigh Chamber of Commerce, and the North Carolina Center for Nonprofits. She has served as an advisory panelist for numerous local and state funding agencies across the country and served on the board of directors of Arts NC.

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