About The A-TEAM Artists of Trenton
The Trenton Community A-TEAM supports, develops, and promotes self-taught, local artists because art can be transformative by reframing the artist’s connectedness to self and others and by enhancing community pride.
In 2001, five self-taught visual artists who used the services of the Trenton Area Soup Kitchen (TASK) discussed the possibility of forming an artist cooperative. The idea was to offer those who possessed artistic interests and talents but did not have the personal resources to pursue their creative activities and ultimately sell their artwork and share the benefits of their efforts.
The number of artists grew quickly, and the walls of the soup kitchen became a year-round gallery for the display of their work. Over the years, the “A-TEAM Artists of Trenton” have participated in hundreds of shows at such diverse venues as museums, galleries, corporate offices, governmental departments, non-profit organizations, and religious organizations. Some examples are The New Jersey State Museum, the Arts Council of Princeton, The Pennington-Ewing Athletic Center, NJ Department of Environmental Protection, The Trenton Health Team, Trinity Church of Princeton, and many more.
The A-TEAM artists also leads monthly art workshops for residents of the Rescue Mission of Trenton and consumers at The ARC/Mercer, an organization that provides services for physically and cognitively disabled adults. In addition, the artists have hosted clients from the Trenton Psychiatric Hospital’s art therapy program at their regular TASK studio hours.
In 2010, the A-TEAM artists began seeking tax-exempt IRS status for their unique collaborative efforts and activities, and in July 2014, 501©(3) nonprofit status was finally granted, thus allowing A-TEAM supporters to make tax-deductible contributions to the artists and allowing the artists to submit proposals to agencies that fund arts groups.
The artists are currently moving into additional space a few blocks from TASK at 51 North Stockton Street, informally known within TCAT as “Studio 51.” All A-TEAM artwork will be for sale year round at “Studio 51.” TCAT has also recently hired Tanji Gilliam, Ph.D., MFA as Executive Director and with her leadership, is planning to expand the activities and membership of the group in a variety of new directions, including hosting a minimum of 10 art-related community events each year.