ASBURY PARK, NJ – John Viggiano Jr., artist, gallery owner, graphic designer, and Asbury Park resident was looking for a way to reach out to the growing art community of Asbury Park. After a successful start to The Gallery 13 in the Shoppes at the Arcade on Cookman Ave. “I saw the need to support the arts in this area, and enjoy the take of creating cooperative environments to help people work together.  The more people work in conjunction with each other, it becomes so much easier to reach a common goal.  I’m confident that this venture, with the help of ColArt Americas with be just as successful as my other cooperative businesses”

John Viggiano Jr.

John contacted his former college art professor, Jimmy Leslie who is currently the Resident Artist at ColArt Americas in Piscataway, N.J. to see if there was any way that ColArt would consider helping to furnish the space with easels and other types of supplies to get the space rolling.  It just so happened that ColArt, the manufacturers and distributors of Winsor & Newton, Liquitex and Conté a Paris were also seeking a way to further reach out to the community. With a philosophy centered on sustainability; enriching the community, supporting artists from the ground up and helping artists build their careers (all top priorities at ColArt) it was fortunate for them to hear about this grassroots artist collaborative space at its developing stage.

“ColArt really saw this as a great way to support John with an annual grant to fund the space as well as provide artists with product and technical resources as well as other opportunities to partner with the rich arts community in Asbury Park,” said Renée Hile, VP Marketing at ColArt.  “As a NJ based company it is a natural first step in getting involved more directly in community advocacy programs like this that are sprouting up nationally, we hope this partnership can translate to other areas of the state and country as a natural progression.”

This space is really about bringing artists together, helping them with a place to work where it doesn’t break their bank and hopefully they enjoy collective ideas and grow relationships that will help them further their art careers.  It isn’t only for professional artists, we want to be sure we are also reaching serious artists who may be at the beginning and middle stages of building their career.  Helping someone reach their ultimate goal of becoming a successful artist is what drives everyone involved in this project.


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ColArt and John Viggiano’s passion and enthusiasm for sustaining the link between art and community has resulted in The COLlective ART tank.

Its goal is to support artists in the growing arts community of Asbury Park, N.J. by offering affordable studio space, samples of art materials, technique based demos and exhibition opportunities. There will also be opportunities to work with the Resident Artist of ColArt in the testing of new materials and focus groups as well as special projects. ColArt and John Viggiano are also committed to community outreach by working with and supporting local arts groups in their efforts to make Asbury Park and surrounding communities an art destination of the Tri-State area.

For more information about how to join the space as well as see what we are up to, either visit us in the Shoppes at the Arcade at 658 Cookman Ave (downstairs) or at

Our grand opening will coincide with CityArts Weekend in Asbury Park on September 24,25, and 26th 2010.

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Allan Dean

Allan Dean is editor, publisher, and founder of the Atlantic Highlands Herald. Published since 1999 and selected in 2000 by the Borough of Atlantic Highlands as one of their official newspapers, making...