Presence Life Connections

Director’s Note

Welcome to the Gretchen Charlton Art Gallery. Our non-profit gallery has been part of the Kankakee community for over 15 years.  We aim to be a gathering space for sharing ideas and amplifying creative voices by exhibiting work from students, emerging, and professional artists locally and regionally. My personal vision for the gallery is to be a strong contributor to the creative culture the Kankakee area seems to already be actively growing towards. The gallery is a unique space as it is located in Presence Heritage Village, where people live and work. All of our exhibitions and receptions are free, open to the public, and appropriate for all ages.  So stop in to enjoy the art and say “Hi!” Get on our mailing list or find us on Facebook to stay updated with shows and events. 

Victoria Strole
Director, Gretchen Charlton Art Gallery



The Gretchen Charlton Art Gallery is committed to being a space for the visual arts and community believing that art should be part of our everyday lives.  We aim to exhibit work that enriches our lives through critical inquiry, creative stimulus, and quality ties to others. GCAG hopes to offer accessible opportunities with art to people of all ages promoting diversity, equity, and community.



The Gretchen Charlton Art Gallery was commissioned by generous donors, Jack and Gretchen Charlton as a way to share their passion for art with Kankakee.  Presence Heritage Village was kind enough to donate space between their dependent and independent living quarters making the gallery unique in the sense that it is housed where people both live and work. The Charlton’s as well as several charting members from the local community, hospital, Kankakee Chamber of Commerce, and other organizations pooled their money and talents to erect the gallery in 2000.  The gallery maintains a permanent collection that has grown from works gifted from art collectors and local artists as well as pieces purchased from our past exhibitions.  The permanent collection is on display in the communal spaces within Heritage Village and Heritage Lodge.  Heritage Village also houses works donated from the Charlton’s private collection. 


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