So for the past three years, the group has been forced into being nomadic, displaying their works in places like Symposia Bookstore, Stevens Institute of Technology's library, and the Justice William Brennan Courthouse Gallery in Jersey City.
Hob'art's current exhibit is at the Justice William Brennan Courthouse Gallery, 583 Newark Ave., Jersey City, from now until Sept. 9.
While they are certainly appreciative of the generosity of those who have provided space, they realize that so much more could be done in their own home.
"We want to exhibit our work, but we also want to give back to this very wonderful community," said Liz Cohen, founder of hob'art and an artist for 25 years.
What is an art co-operative?
Hob'art is a co-operative gallery comprised of members from Hoboken and the surrounding areas. The goal of the group is to serve the community by providing a showcase for fine art from local artists.
Cohen said that the co-operative supports local artists in their efforts that their "voice" may be heard.
Membership in hob'art is open to artists in all mediums ranging from painting and drawing to print making and photography to sculpture and 3D.
Looking for a home
Despite not having a permanent space, hob'art has already hosted art classes, workshops and slide nights around Hoboken. The members are currently seeking not-for-profit status in the hopes of starting a gallery and community arts center.
Cohen said that a permanent galley would be full of benefits for everyone.
"It's a win-win situation for the artist community, the art viewing public and for the business community," Cohen said. "One of my great pleasures is to have a really good meal and then stroll to an art gallery and look at work, and we miss that in our town."
Cohen added that another benefit of hob'art is it helps nurture the city's artist community. "We have very talented members but some of them never show professionally," Cohen said. "This is an opportunity for them to get that kind of experience."
Hob'art member Roslyn Rose, in conjunction with hob'art, recently displayed her work at the Symposia Bookstore on Washington Street. Her unique style uses emulsion transfer photography to create collages. The basic theme of much of her work is the exploration of female artists. "I think that artists tend to work in isolation because they feel that's what is expected of them," Rose said. "But in [hob'art] we are able to learn and grow together."
Hob'art member Leslie Rubman, who is a mixed media artist, said that her experience with the group has been amazing.
"What I like most about hob'art is that it's like this little family," Rubman said. "It's this diverse group of artists who have produced all of these great works. There's really a great spirit about it."
Expensive for artists in Hoboken
But in Hoboken, a high rent town, finding a cheap storefront is difficult. In some ways, Hoboken is a victim of its own success, especially when it comes to the city's artists.
Gentrification is a phenomenon that artists know all too well. Artists move into a run-down neighborhood where there are wide open industrial lofts and the rents are cheap. They make the neighborhood trendy and hip, which creates energy and desirability. All of this attracts development interests. Higher property values drive out the arts.
This has been that case in places like Hoboken, SoHo in New York City and the Market District in San Francisco.
By the 1980s, a growing group of artists began to discover Hoboken as an inexpensive alternative to Manhattan. Craftsmen could find a cold-water flat for less than $100 a month.
But as each year passes, it's has become harder for artists to stay, said Cohen.
As a result, the artist community has dwindled and many have migrated to places such as Union City and Jersey City.
"The whole renovation of Hoboken 30 years ago was spearheaded by the artist community," Cohen said, "We helped make this city a desirable place to live."
She added that the artist community has to be nurtured and supported or Hoboken is in jeopardy of losing it to surrounding communities.
"It amazing how many of the artists in Jersey City and Union City used to be Hoboken people," Cohen said.