Copley society


The oldest non-profit art association in the United States, the Copley Society now represents more than 700 artist members nationwide. Also known as Co|So, it is dedicated to fostering interest in the visual arts through member exhibitions, outreach educational programs, workshops, lectures and the advancement of the careers of emerging and young artists. The Copley Society dates to 1879 when the School of the Museum of Fine Arts opened in Copley Square on the site of what is now the Copley Hotel. One of the students, Alice Spencer Tinkham, promoted the idea of establishing an organization to promote art and its study in Boston, and the response led to the formation of the Boston Art Students Association. The first president was H. Winthrop Peirce, and the group sponsored exhibitions, classes and social gatherings. In 1891, it was renamed the Copley Society. In 1913, the Copley Society hosted in Boston the New York Armory Show that rocked the world of many art-focused Americans because of the introduction of abstract art from Europe. In this exhibit, Marcel DuChamp's "Nude Descending the Stairs" introduced modernism to Boston and the nation. In 1957, The Copley Society settled into its current home at 158 Newbury Street, which has bi-level galleries and offices. Members include Thomas Allen, Dwight Blaney, Joseph Enneking, Charles Davis, Philip Hale, Ignaz Gaugengigl, Abbott Graves. Sources:; AskART database