ArtPrize executive director resigns

Christian Gaines
An undated image of Christian Gaines, taken from video.

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — A familiar face of ArtPrize is leaving the organization.

ArtPrize Executive Director Christian Gaines is stepping down from his post. The nonprofit organization announced its board of directors accepted his resignation on Wednesday.

In a news release by ArtPrize, Gaines stated he was “honored to have served ArtPrize” and Grand Rapids.

“We are all excited for the future of ArtPrize and eager to celebrate its 10th anniversary this fall,” he added.

Gaines joined ArtPrize in 2013. Founder Rick DeVos said in that time, the competition has shifted to a different award structure, expanded artist and education grants and grown to engage more of the community.

ArtPrize says its director of business development, Jori Bennett, will serve as acting director while the group conducts a national search for Gaines’ permanent replacement. Bennett has been with the group since 2015.

Jori Bennett
Photo: Jori Bennett (courtesy ArtPrize).

ArtPrize officials declined a request for an interview with 24 Hour News 8 Wednesday.

ArtPrize 10 runs from Sept. 19 through Oct. 7.