America’s Top Realist Painter Voted to Head 150-Year-Old Art Institution

Jacob Collins raised to President of Salmagundi


NEW YORK, New York (September 13, 2021)–Powerhouse realist painter and teacher Jacob Collins was recently voted by his fellow eleven hundred artist members to ascend to the Presidency of  Salmagundi, a non-profit in New York’s historic downtown that connects artists and patrons.  Collins, who owns one of New York’s most popular atelier-style art schools, had been a resident artist member at Salmagundi since 2016.

Jacob Collins: Self-portrait.
Jacob Collins: Self-portrait.

“I was never really that active in the Salmagundi Club but loved to attend lectures and have an occasional drink at the bar with fellow artists and patrons.  As a working artist, I was always short on time.  But, when my fellow artists asked if they could nominate me to be President, I was both flattered and immediately daunted.  The organization is 150 years old and so many greats were members, including Moran, Chase, Tiffany, Hassam and even Churchill.  The pressure was on,” says Collins.

Proving Collins is busy, he is building a new place to live a block from the historic 1853 Salmagundi townhouse, moving his successful school, Grand Central Atelier (GCA) to expand to a larger location, running summer painting workshops, and that is just the beginning.

Continuing Chairman of the Board, Antiques Roadshow OG favorite and Heritage Auction Sr. Vice President of Special Collections, Nicholas Dawes, had this to say about Collins: “Jacob is incredible.  He elevates everything he touches.  He is far too humble to admit any of this, but I can tell you that his mind is always working, refining and raising the level of everything he does.  One look at his own artistic work and you know he is a person who thinks and cares deeply.”

Collin’s two-year minimum term as President of Salmagundi allows him to set the tone and art direction of the venerable arts institution.  Salmagundi has two equal co-heads, Dawes and now Collins.  Dawes is responsible for the business side of Salmagundi and the art is under Collins’s direction.  The dynamic duo have immediately started to make upgrades to the club, its art and all of its operations since the new term which began in June, 2021.

In honor of the club’s 150-year anniversary, cut short by the pandemic, Collins and Dawes have renovated the private dining area, welcomed other important historic organizations into the fold, re-housed the permanent art collection, and are making enhancements to the heart of the club, the historic pre-Dewey Decimal library with an important commission of painted panels for the doors, new stained glass windows and more. There is a large array of historical and living artist exhibitions planned including one on Bill Baird, an important past member and puppeteer, a show on Mucha and Lalique, and a 100-year show of New York female artists.


Salmagundi is a non-profit 501(c)(3), professional and social club, created in 1871 by artists and patrons to support one another. It is one of America’s oldest arts organizations with more than 1,100 current members throughout the United States and abroad.

The Club has continuously championed representational art from its founding with iconic members, including: Thomas Moran (1837-1926), William Merritt Chase (1849-1916), Louis Comfort Tiffany (1848-1933), Emil Carlsen (1848-1932), N.C. Wyeth (1882-1945), Childe Hassam (1859-1935) and Winston Churchill (1874-1965).

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Joseph Ralph Fraia, Chair or Charity Henderson, Vice-Chair
Salmagundi Public Relations Committee
(917) 930-1494 or (315) 506-8108