By Stephanie Oh, Markets Media Life Correspondent
You may have visited Chelsea Market to get a bite of a boiled lobster. But did you know that Chelsea is home to many fine galleries and has gained the title of “art district” in New York? Art collectors usually meander through numerous art galleries to find a perfect art piece for their living room. Agora Gallery, located in the heart of Chelsea’s art district, brings emerging and established artists across the globe together with art collectors.
Markets Media recently spoke to Agora Gallery about the upcoming exhibitions Répartie in Art and Rhapsody in Color, and here’s how director Angela Di Bello described the collection of these vivid strokes of brushes.
Markets Media Life (MML): Where does the name “Agora” come from? Can you provide a little background on the gallery?
Angela Di Bello (ADB): The name “Agora” comes from the Greek word meaning “open market.” That name speaks to our philosophy and mission: we aim to connect artists with collectors from all across the world. In 1984, Miki Stiles, an artist, was struggling to break into the NYC art world. She found that galleries in the area were not open to emerging artists – especially women. She founded Agora Gallery with the idea of giving all artists a fair chance for exposure in NYC. When it first opened, Agora Gallery was located in SoHo. However, much of the art culture eventually moved out of SoHo and into Chelsea. So, in 2002, Agora Gallery moved to 530 W 25th Street – a space we have occupied ever since. In 2014, we expanded to include both the first and second floors, greatly increasing the space in which to exhibit artists.
MML: What was the inspiration for these two exhibitions?
ADB: In every exhibition, we attempt to balance the line of thematic cohesion and aesthetic variety. Our two exhibitions in July include abstract and figurative works, each inspired by vastly different environments, influences, and subjects. In the exhibition Répartie in Art, the viewer is confronted with many immediate, arresting scenes. The works all seem to play with the idea of “space” – how people interact with their spaces, how spaces can effect emotions. The places transform space both in their subject matter and in how they fill the rooms they are in. It’s very compelling.
In Rhapsody in Color, as the name implies, we’re featuring artists who exhibit a mastery over color. Again, not all of the pieces are abstract and not all of them are figurative. Instead, we’re exploring how color can interact with different media and subject matters to develop a distinctive energy unique to each artist. It’s extraordinary to see how these colors play off of each other and how the very defined voices of each artist interact as a whole in the exhibition.
MML: How did you choose the artists for the exhibition? How was the selection process?
ADB: The artists in these July exhibitions are very international; coming from all over Europe, Asia, and South and North America. It’s always very exciting to represent such a variety of personalities and cultures in one show, as it truly shows both the unity and diversity of today’s global art world. That’s what New York is all about!
MML: What do you think the final outcome of the exhibition will be? What do you hope this exhibition will show the audiences?
ADB: It’s always difficult to say for sure what an audience will take away from your exhibitions. Our visitors are as diverse as our artists: we get traffic from collectors, artists, students, and tourists. When you have such a visible location, the crowds you attract are always so colorful and they react in the most beautiful ways to the artwork.
As always, we hope that our audience will be able to take something personal from the exhibitions. Either they will react to the exhibition as a whole or they’ll find a gem – their own personal favorite – within the group. At the end of the day, the best we can hope for is that we have given people something intellectually stimulating to think about and something beautiful to look at.
July 7 – July 28
The art reception will be held on Thursday, July 9th from 6 PM to 8 PM.
Agora Gallery is located on 530 W 25th Street.
For more information, visit their website.
Featured Images Courtesy of Agora Gallery