In 1996, a handful of creative artists and craftspeople decided to open an outlet for their wares and found a home in the historic Jerome Hotel, where they have been popular residents ever since. Today the Co-op membership hovers around 35 artists and craftspeople who live in Jerome as well as within the surrounding communities. Members take turns minding the sales desk, ensuring the Gallery's being open every day of the year from 10 am-6 pm, except on Christmas Day. This delights visitors, as they are able to meet and actually speak with a "real local artist" whenever they visit the Co-op. In an age where many touristy items in Arizona are "Made in China," the Co-op fills an important gap by creating fine works of art that satisfies the need of a visitor looking to purchase local art work at a reasonable price. Many visitors praise our gallery as showcasing the finest collection of local art in the area.
Today the Jerome Artists' Cooperative Gallery is one of the most unique businesses in Jerome. Because the artist-members themselves work the front sales desk, visitors have an opportunity to talk with, ask questions and hear stories about Jerome first hand. The Co-op members represent an important segment of a population to whom Jerome owes its current livelihood. The artists and artisans of the past helped revitalize a town that suffered from a broken economy after the closing of the mines. The stories told about the ghosts, the mines, the hippies, and the scoundrels of the past all gave Jerome new life which the artists of today value and expand upon, helping to make Jerome a unique art and history destination today.
As residents of the Hotel Jerome for nearly 20 years, the Jerome Artists' Cooperative Gallery members continue to freely share stories and insights about the history of the Hotel Jerome in particular, and Jerome's history in general, with visitors. From the windows of the Co-op, members point out to visitors other historical landmarks, such as the old Douglass mansion, now a State Park, the Powder Box church, the Grand Hotel, the Old High School, and other interesting landmarks, places to stay, and unique places to eat.
The Co-op's front desk displays a notebook of Jerome businesses, eateries and lodging options in town. The Jerome Hotel is also host to public restrooms which draws in quite a crowd! Visitors enjoy loitering in the Gallery while absorbing the history, talking with artists, enjoying the views and admiring the art.
Art Walk (the first Saturday of each month) extends an invitation to our local neighbors and friends to come out for an evening of fun and entertainment while viewing our Featured Artist's newest works, and visiting the many unique shops, galleries and restaurants of Jerome.