Massachusetts has entered into the Second step of Phase 2 of the state’s reopening after the lockdown caused by the pandemic. Retail stores are now allowed to accommodate 8 persons per 1,000 sqft, restaurants will be able to have indoor dining and contact services such as nail salons can now open again. According to Governor Baker, Phase 3 will see gyms, museums and more, opening no later than July 6. This is certainly great news as this shows that new cases of Covid-19 have either plateau-ed or declined.
Although I started my gallery as an online platform, I have never discounted the possibility of opening a brick and mortar gallery. I spent the last two months looking for a suitable space, weighing the pros and cons of suburban vs city gallery and also the possibility of cheaper rent if I waited.
Let me preface by saying I resolutely believe in the future of online art galleries and the shift in the way we view and buy art through digital forms. The pandemic has proven that it is possible to acquire art online even six figure priced artwork, evidenced by the success of Frieze NY and now Art Basel which is fully online. Mind you, my gallery which is two months old has successfully presented two art exhibitions and sold art online.
A physical space plays several parts in my gallery’s plan. First and foremost, it is my ‘HQ’; a place of work and business. Secondly, it serves to contextualize curated and scholarly exhibitions I aim to bring to the public within an appropriate setting. Especially when it comes to presenting 3D works as Augmented Reality technology is still developing. There is a certain formality when one confronts art within the confines of a ‘white cube’. The captive audience gives up a part of themselves to be in the space where labels and art placements dictates how the work is consumed. Selfishly, as a gallerist, I want to be able to direct how the art is viewed to optimize the experience for the public. In addition, this serves the section of the market that are more encouraged to enjoy art through in person visits. Furthermore, we cannot discount the power of social meetings and events which this space will serve, complimenting the virtual receptions that continues to be a feature of my gallery.
As no one really knows what this summer will be like for art business, I decided to take up a temporary space in Wellesley to capture the public that has decided to stay locally. At a reduced rate, a wonderful space came on the market and as a result, I will be based at 15 Central St Wellesley MA for the months of July and August. I will be having two exhibitions at this Pop Up gallery, Alysia Macaulay: Reshape And Reshuffle from July 11 - 25 and two person exhibition by Nancy Gruskin + Jordan Kessler: What We Had On Hand from August 1 - 22. And for the future I want to do more and have a permanent space that I am negotiating for from September onwards which will be located in downtown where there are art vibrancy.