In August of 1978, Artlink Alternative Artspace was founded in an apartment on Broadway in downtown Fort Wayne, Indiana. A community of artists from all backgrounds gathered together around the mission to showcase new and emerging artists and art forms. Forty years later, Artlink continues to uphold the spirit of that original mission. A new exhibition opening August 10th, Encores: 40 Years of Artlink, will take viewers through Artlink’s long and important history in the arts community.
In 1979, Artlink debuted Encores, a special exhibition of works by eleven practicing Fort Wayne artists that had previously exhibited that year. Encores: 40 Years of Artlink will feature forty influential artists on Artlink’s history. These artists have served as founders of the organization, staff and directors, curators, teachers, and much more. Each participating artist has worked to keep Artlink’s mission alive through their support and dedication to art in this community. This includes artists such as Betty Fishman, longtime director of Artlink, Maurice Papier, Gregg Coffey, Julie Wall, Jerrod Tobias, and more. Alongside these artists, a timeline of Artlink’s history will emerge through historical documents, postcards, photographs, and newspaper articles from Artlink’s archives.
The exhibition, Artlink hopes, will excite and inspire new generations to continue carrying the creative energy set in motion 40 years ago and further support the arts community in Fort Wayne, Indiana. In addition to this exhibition, Artlink will hold a birthday bash celebration on Saturday, September 8 from 7-10pm. This free event will feature a cash bar, music by the Legendary Trainhoppers, free desserts, art activities, and more.