Artists Space is a non-profit art gallery and arts organization first established at 155 Wooster Street in Soho, New York City. Founded in 1972 by Irving Sandler and Trudie Grace and funded by the New York State Council on the Arts (NYSCA), Artists Space provided an alternative support structure for young, emerging artists, separate from the museum and commercial gallery system.Artists Space has historically been engaged in critical dialogues surrounding institutional critique, racism, the AIDS crisis, and Occupy Wall Street.
Artists Space has provided a platform for many notable artists, including Laurie Anderson, John Baldessari, Judith Barry, Ericka Beckman, Ashley Bickerton, Barbara Bloom, Andrea Fraser, Felix Gonzalez-Torres, Lyle Ashton Harris, Peter Halley, Jenny Holzer, Joan Jonas, Mike Kelley, Jeff Koons, Barbara Kruger, Sherrie Levine, Louise Lawler, Robert Longo, Anthony McCall, Ericka Beckman, John Miller, Adrian Piper, Lari Pittman, Tim Rollins, Cindy Sherman, Jack Smith, Michael Smith, Haim Steinbach, Stuart Sherman, Laurie Simmons, Frederick Weston, and Fred Wilson.
During its first year, 21 prominent artists were chosen to produce a one-person exhibition, and chose three unaffiliated artists to show work simultaneously.Artists such as Romare Bearden, Vito Acconci, Dan Flavin, Nancy Graves, Sol LeWitt, Philip Pearlstein, Dorothea Rockburne, Lucas Samaras, and Jack Youngerman were among those chosen to exhibit and select artists. The system provided artists with a great amount of curatorial agency, and the opportunity for emerging artists to gain visibility.
Several artists support services were also established early on, including the Visiting Artists Lecture Series, the Emergency Materials Fund, and the Independent Exhibitions Program.These programs were designed to provide visibility and financial assistance to artists, as well as opportunities to exhibit outside of Artists Space. The Emergency Materials Fund provided grants to artists to present their work at an established non-profit venue, while the Independent Exhibitions Program supported the needs of unaffiliated artists who were producing and presenting their work without institutional sponsorship.
In 1974, The Unaffiliated Artists File was established, later shortened to the "Artists File" in 1983.The file was originally composed solely of unaffiliated, New York-based artists, then was expanded to include artists across the United States, and eventually, to include 3000 artists located internationally. The Artists File was both a free database open to the public as well as a service for representing a wide range of independent artists. Artists Space regularly organized group exhibitions entitled Selections, which featured registered artists from the File. The Artists File was one of the largest artists registries in the world, with more than 10,000 users. It was digitized in 1986.
In 1974, Edit DeAk organized PersonA, a photo and video performance series focusing on autobiography and institutional critique of the art world.Laurie Anderson, Eleanor Anton, Jennifer Bartlett, Dennis Oppenheim, Adrian Piper, Alan Sondheim and Kathy Acker, Peter Hutchinson, Jack Smith, Scott Burton, Roger Welch, and Nancy Kitchell exhibited works. The series took place over four consecutive evenings.
In 1977, Douglas Crimp curated Pictures, an exhibition featuring the work of Troy Brauntuch, Jack Goldstein, Sherrie Levine and Robert Longo.The show featured multimedia works including photography, film, performance as well as painting, drawing, and sculpture. After first being exhibited at Artists Space, the exhibition traveled to the Allen Art Museum, Oberlin, the Los Angeles Institute of Contemporary Art, and the University of Colorado Museum, Boulder. Crimp stated about the show:
"In choosing the word pictures for this show, I hoped to convey not only the work's most salient characteristic-recognizable images-but also and importantly the ambiguities it sustains. As is typical of what has come to be called postmodernism, this new work is not confined to any particular medium....Picture, used colloquially, is also nonspecific: a picture book might be a book of drawings or photographs, and in common speech a painting, drawing, or print is often called, simply, a picture. Equally important for my purposes, picture, in its verb form, can refer to a mental process as well as the production of an aesthetic object."
In 1978, Artists Space served as a site of inception for the No Wave movement, hosting a punk subculture-influenced noise series.The festival led to the Brian Eno-produced recording No New York , which documented James Chance and the Contortions, Teenage Jesus and the Jerks, Mars, and DNA.
In 1979, the gallery hosted an exhibition of black-and-white photographs and charcoal drawings by white artist Donald Newman entitled "Nigger Drawings".Linda Goode Bryant of Just Above Midtown Gallery and her colleague Janet Henry mobilized a coalition of artists and critics including Lucy Lippard, Carl Andre, May Stevens, Edit DeAk, Faith Ringgold, and Howardena Pindell, who acted as the Black Emergency Cultural Coalition and published an open letter criticizing the exhibition. They also organized two "teach-in" demonstrations, but only one was successfully held as the gallery locked its doors. Another coalition of artists and critics including Roberta Smith, Laurie Anderson, Rosalind E. Krauss, Craig Owens, Douglas Crimp, and Stephen Koch published an open letter defending the exhibition and the choice of its title. Director Helene Winer argued that the context of the title was not racist in intention, and that art is "a territory where everything can be explored, discussed, revalued.” She apologized, stating, “We were not politically or socially sensitive to the implications of using that title in a publicly funded art gallery. I feel very badly for those who were legitimately offended.” Artists from the Black Emergency Cultural Coalition insisted on Artists Space being held accountable for the show in the "reality of social-political structure", while artist John Chandler called on Artists Space to "become the alternative space it is truly meant to be" and not "mirror the subtle racism that exists throughout the art world."
In 1987, Artists Space held the exhibition We the People, a group installation of Native American artists, including Pena Bonita, Jimmie Durham, Peter Jemison, Alan Michelson, Jolene Rickard, and Kay Walkingstick.The name was chosen with "deliberate irony", as the exhibition coincided with the 50th Anniversary of the United States Constitution, the preamble of which had been "appropriated from the Iroquois federation". The exhibition experimented with the "reflection of the [white] colonial ethnographic gaze" onto indigenous traditions, and adaptation of new technologies as a result of European settlers.
In 1988, Artists Space hosted Min Joong Art: A New Cultural Movement from Korea, an exhibition of multi-disciplinary work and video by South Korean artists, curated by Wan Kyung Sun and Hyuk Um.It was organized to coincide with the Summer 1988 Olympic Games in Seoul, South Korea. The title of the exhibition translates to "art of the people", and represented a "counterpoint to the abstract and minimal work exhibited in the extensive cultural exhibitions planned for the Olympics."
In 1989, Nan Goldin curated the exhibition Witnesses: Against Our Vanishing at Artists Space, bringing together works from her friends that were impacted by the AIDS epidemic.About the exhibition, Goldin stated, "Over the past year four more of my most beloved friends have died of AIDS. Two were artists I had selected for this exhibit. One of the writers for this catalogue has become too sick to write. And so the tone of the exhibition has become less theoretical and more personal, from a show about AIDS as an issue to more of a collective memorial." After one of the artists, David Wojnarowicz, published an essay criticizing right wing politicians for failing to fund HIV research and effectively furthering the spread of AIDS, the National Endowment for the Arts withdrew their $10,000 grant for the exhibition. The grant was later partially re-issued.
In 1990, Cornelia Butler and Micki McGee organized A Day Without Art, where the gallery closed its regular exhibitions to present a one-day video program and installation investigating the body and the body politic in relation to medical, ethical, and social conditions of AIDS treatment.
In 1991, the exhibition Japan: Outside/Inside/InBetween was a three-part video program investigating representations of Japan.
In 1992, A New World Order: Part I: Choice Histories: Framing Abortion was a group installation on reproductive rights in the United States, organized by REPOhistory.
In 1996, Artists Space presented Mr. Dead & Mrs. Free: A History of Squat Theatre (1969-1991), collaborating with its founding members Eva Buchmüller and Anna Koós to produce a retrospective of its work.
In June 2003, Artists Space hosted a survey of architect Zaha Hadid’s work as part of the Architecture and Design Project series. The show featured both completed and conceptualized projects by Hadid, and coincided with the opening of her commissioned Price Arts Tower in Bartlesville, Oklahoma.
From November to December 2003, Artists Space organized Superstudio: Life without Objects in collaboration with the Pratt Manhattan Gallery and the Storefront for Art and Architecture.The show explored the work of Superstudio, an Italian avant-garde architecture and design group that was influential to the radical period of the 1960s and 1970s in Italy.
In 2010, Artists Space hosted Danh Vo's first exhibition in the United States, entitled Autoerotic Asphyxiation.
In 2011, Artists Space offered its resources to movements like Strike Debt and Working Artists and the Greater Economy (W.A.G.E), holding a series of lectures and meeting inciting dialogue on art's indisputable relation to politics.Artists Space formed a research partnership with W.A.G.E that led to the development of W.A.G.E's current certification program, which credits non-profit art organizations that commit to paying artists fees that meet their minimum payment standards.
In 2015, Artists Space presented a survey of Hito Steyerl's work from 2004 onwards, displayed across both its main gallery and Books & Talks location. The self-titled exhibition also encompassed lectures and film screenings, and also hosted various pieces of Steyerl's writing online.
From January to March 2016, Artists Space hosted the exhibition 91020000 by Cameron Rowland, wherein Rowland purchased various units from an affordable manufacturing company named Corcraft that relies on underpaid prison labor.The exhibition title referred to the gallery's customer account number: 91020000. For another work, Disengorgement, Rowland purchased 90 shares of Aetna, who previously issued slave insurance to slaveowners in order to establish the “Reparations Purpose Trust.” The trust states that it is to be held until “the effective date of any official action by any branch of the United States government to make financial reparations for slavery.”
From September to December 2016, Decolonize This Place conducted a residency at Artists Space, where the Books & Talks location (55 Walker Street) functioned as a headquarters and meeting place for artists and organizers across New York City, many of whom were tied to decolonial resistance at national and global scales.
In 2018, just before the closing of its 55 Walker Street location, Artists Space hosted Jack Smith: Art Crust of Spiritual Oasis, the first institutional retrospective of Jack Smith's work in over 20 years.
Keith Allen Haring was an American artist whose pop art emerged from the New York City graffiti subculture of the 1980s. His animated imagery has "become a widely recognized visual language". Much of his work includes sexual allusions that turned into social activism by using the images to advocate for safe sex and AIDS awareness. In addition to solo gallery exhibitions, Haring participated in renowned national and international group shows such as documenta in Kassel, the Whitney Biennial in New York, the São Paulo Biennial, and the Venice Biennale. The Whitney Museum held a retrospective of his art in 1997.
Robert Michael Mapplethorpe was an American photographer, best known for his black-and-white photographs. His work featured an array of subjects, including celebrity portraits, male and female nudes, self-portraits, and still-life images. His most controversial works documented and examined the gay male BDSM subculture of New York City in the late 1960s and early 1970s. A 1989 exhibition of Mapplethorpe's work, titled Robert Mapplethorpe: The Perfect Moment, sparked a debate in the United States concerning both use of public funds for "obscene" artwork and the Constitutional limits of free speech in the United States.
The Art Gallery of Ontario is an art museum in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. The museum is located in the Grange Park neighbourhood of downtown Toronto, on Dundas Street West between McCaul and Beverley streets. The museum's building complex takes up 45,000 square metres (480,000 sq ft) of physical space, making it one of the largest art museums in North America. In addition to exhibition spaces, the museum also houses an artist-in-residence office and studio, dining facilities, event spaces, gift shop, library and archives, theatre and lecture hall, research centre, and a workshop.
The Whitechapel Gallery is a public art gallery in Whitechapel on the north side of Whitechapel High Street, in the London Borough of Tower Hamlets. The original building, designed by Charles Harrison Townsend, opened in 1901 as one of the first publicly funded galleries for temporary exhibitions in London. The Whitechapel Gallery is the notable example of the Modern Style. In 2009 the gallery approximately doubled in size by incorporating the adjacent former Passmore Edwards library building. It exhibits the work of contemporary artists and organizes retrospective exhibitions and other art shows.
Hito Steyerl is a German filmmaker, moving image artist, writer, and innovator of the essay documentary. Her principal topics of interest are media, technology, and the global circulation of images. Steyerl holds a PhD in Philosophy from the Academy of Fine Arts Vienna. She is currently a professor of New Media Art at the Berlin University of the Arts, where she co-founded the Research Center for Proxy Politics, together with Vera Tollmann and Boaz Levin.
Robert Gober is an American sculptor. His work is often related to domestic and familiar objects such as sinks, doors, and legs.
The Madison Museum of Contemporary Art (MMoCA), formerly known as the Madison Art Center, is an independent, non-profit art museum located in downtown Madison, Wisconsin.
The Institute of Contemporary Art (ICA) is an art museum and exhibition space located in Boston, Massachusetts, United States of America. The museum was founded as the Boston Museum of Modern Art in 1936 with a mission to exhibit contemporary art. Since then it has gone through multiple name changes as well as moving its galleries and support spaces over 13 times. Its current home was built in 2006 in the South Boston Seaport District and designed by architects Diller Scofidio + Renfro.
[The] 9th Street Art Exhibition of Paintings and Sculpture is the official title artist Franz Kline hand-lettered onto the poster he designed for the Ninth Street Show(May 21-June 10, 1951). Now considered historic, the artist-led exhibition marked the formal debut of Abstract Expressionism, and the first American art movement with international influence. The School of Paris, long the headquarters of the global art market, typically launched new movements, so there was both financial and cultural fall-out when all the excitement was suddenly emanating from New York. The post-war New York avant-garde, artists like Willem de Kooning and Jackson Pollock, would soon become "art stars," commanding large sums and international attention. The Ninth Street Show marked their "stepping-out," and that of nearly 75 other artists, including Helen Frankenthaler, Joan Mitchell, Grace Hartigan, Robert De Niro Sr., Philip Guston, Elaine de Kooning, Lee Krasner, Franz Kline, Ad Reinhardt, David Smith, Milton Resnick, Robert Motherwell, Barnett Newman and many others who were then mostly unknown to an art establishment that ignored experimental art without a ready market.
The Leslie-Lohman Museum of Art (LLM), formerly the Leslie-Lohman Museum of Gay and Lesbian Art, is a visual art museum in SoHo, Lower Manhattan, New York City. It mainly collects, preserves and exhibits visual arts created by LGBTQ artists or art about LGBTQ themes, issues, and people. The Museum, operated by the Leslie-Lohman Gay Art Foundation, offers exhibitions year-round in numerous locations and owns more than 22,000 objects, including, paintings, drawings, photography, prints and sculpture. It has been recognized as one of the oldest arts groups engaged in the collection and preservation of gay art. The Foundation was awarded Museum status by the New York State Board of Regents in 2011 and was formally accredited as a museum in 2016. The Museum is a member of the American Alliance of Museums and operates pursuant to their guidelines. As of 2019, the LLM was the only museum in the world dedicated to artwork documenting the LGBTQ experience.
The Stable Gallery, originally located on West 58th Street in New York City, was founded in 1953 by Eleanor Ward. The Stable Gallery hosted early solo New York exhibitions for artists including Robert Indiana and Andy Warhol.
The Art Gallery of Hamilton (AGH) is an art museum located in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada. The museum occupies a 7,000 square metres (75,000 sq ft) building on King Street West in downtown Hamilton, designed by Trevor P. Garwood-Jones. The institution is southwestern Ontario's largest and oldest art museum.
David Bradley Armstrong was an American photographer based in New York, United States.
Yvon Lambert Gallery is a contemporary art gallery in Paris founded by Yvon Lambert in 1966.
Art Projects International is a contemporary art gallery located in TriBeCa, New York City. It focuses on works of art by leading contemporary artists with diverse international backgrounds.
The Pictures Generation, 1974–1984 was an exhibition at The Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City that ran from April 29 – August 2, 2009. The exhibition took its name from Pictures, a 1977 group show organized by art historian and critic Douglas Crimp (1944–2019) at New York City's Artists Space gallery.
Marlborough Fine Art was founded in London in 1946 by Frank Lloyd and Harry Fischer. In 1963, a gallery was opened as Marlborough-Gerson in Manhattan, New York, at the Fuller Building on Madison Avenue and 57th Street, which later relocated in 1971 to its present location, 40 West 57th Street. The gallery operates another New York space on West 25th Street, which opened in 2007. It briefly opened a Lower East Side space on Broome Street.
Helene Winer is an American art gallery owner and curator. She co-owns Metro Pictures Gallery in New York City with Janelle Reiring. Her career deeply involved the postmodern artists of the 1970s and 1980s known as the Pictures Generation. She lives in Tribeca.
Janet Henry is a visual artist based in New York City.
Four Walls was an artist collaborative event space. From 1984–2000, it hosted a wide range of one night activities, such as artist conversations, panel discussions, exhibitions, screenings and performances. The organization consisted of two consecutive phases from 1984–1988 in Hoboken, New Jersey and from 1991–2000 in the Greenpoint Williamsburg neighborhood of Brooklyn, New York. Throughout its life Four Walls was situated in growing creative communities where it served to encourage an exchange of ideas and generated alternative ways of experiencing art.