Reporting on the state of female-run galleries in NYC, Bloomberg Businessweek takes a look at the women gallerists thriving on the Lower East Side.The Art Dossier on April 11, 2012 with 0 Comments
In September of 2008 when Lehman Brothers went bankrupt, many New York businesses were hurting, especially art galleries. Around that same time a small contingency of female gallery owners opened up shop in Manhattan’s Lower East Side. Katya Kazakina of Bloomberg Businessweek takes a look at where they are now and reports that many are thriving thanks to a strong sense of community and a contingency of very talented young artists.
After Lehman Fall, Women Gallerists Struggled, Survived
By Katya Kazakina on April 11, 2012 for Bloomberg News
Laurel Gitlen opened her art gallery of the same name on Manhattan’s Lower East Side in September 2008.
Three days later Lehman Brothers went bankrupt.
“I knew there was going to be some downturn, but I didn’t anticipate how severe it would be,” said Gitlen, 36. “People didn’t even come to see the shows that fall.”
Things have improved.
Sales at her 650-square-foot, light-filled gallery on Broome Street more than doubled each year. She has been accepted into prestigious art fairs and has placed works in public collections, including New York’s Museum of Modern Art.
Gitlen is part of a wave of women art dealers who arrived on the Lower East Side in the past four years.
Anchored and bolstered by the hyper-contemporary New Museum, which opened in late 2007, they are helping transform what was a distant outcropping of the Chelsea art scene into an important hub for new art.
Women own about 30 percent of art galleries on the Lower East Side, up from about 4 percent five years ago, according to Katie Archer, business services manager at Lower East Side Business Improvement District.
The first batch — Gitlen, Candice Madey, Rachel Uffner, Lisa Cooley, Nicelle Beauchene — came in 2008, settling along or near Orchard Street. They had worked at blue-chip Chelsea galleries, auction houses and art-advising firms.
“They bring incredible knowledge, history and experience to the way they promote their artists,” said Sue Stoffel, a collector and emerging-art adviser in Manhattan. “Whenever I go to the Lower East Side, they are the basis of my itinerary.”
Continue reading the rest of the article on Bloomberg News here.