As the Art World Turns
Four new gallery spaces to check out now.
Blum & Poe
It’s not unusual for a New York dealer to establish an outpost in Los Angeles, but few make the reverse migration from West to East. Blum & Poe, a quintessentially L.A. gallery, however, has just set up shop on two floors of an elegant Upper East Side town house, opening, of course, with a solo exhibition by an artist, Mark Grotjahn, who has deep roots in L.A. “We’ve been working with Mark for years,” says Jeff Poe. “We wanted to bring L.A. to New York.” The show, featuring a selection of Grotjahn’s “Butterfly” paintings, has an intimacy befitting New York. “It feels like a home,” Poe says of the 100-year-old building, “and that’s how people really live with art.” There is even an outdoor space that he and his partner Tim Blum have outfitted with a deck. “Nobody else has this around here,” says Poe.
Blum & Poe, 19 East 66th Street, New York, NY, 10065, blumandpoe.com
For the past six years, Nathalie Karg has run Cumulus, a studio that produces outdoor furniture designed by artists. Now the landscape designer has opened her own gallery in a former sandblasting factory on Great Jones Street. The enterprise, she stresses, represents a branching out. “I’ve always wanted to have a regular gallery,” she explains. “But it was a question of finding a space I liked.” After lucking into the location last December, Karg set about “cleaning the hell out of it.” Many gallons of Clorox later, she opened with a three-person exhibition in March. Currently on view, are abstract paintings by L.A. artist Jennifer Guidi. “I love the location,” says Karg, adding that her lease only runs through next summer. “If I have to move, I’ll move,” she says.
Natalie Karg, 41 Great Jones Street, New York, NY, 10012, nathaliekarg.com
With packed exhibition schedules in his London and Hong Kong locations, Simon Lee didn’t need another gallery. But with so many clients, curators, and artists in New York, Lee felt he needed a point of contact here. The solution? An “office-showroom,” as director Manuela Mozo calls the newly opened uptown space. Located on the second floor of a town house, the office is intentionally quiet, low-key, and to that end, open only by appointment. “In Chelsea it would look and feel more like a gallery,” explains Mozo. “We really wanted to fashion it after a salon.”
Simon Lee Gallery, 26 East 64th Street, New York, NY, 10065, simonleegallery.com
“Chelsea is still the center of the contemporary art world,” insists Per Skarstedt, who opened his New York gallery this week, in the space previously occupied by Haunch of Venison. “There is no other place where you can get such incredible exposure.” The large natural-light-flooded space, designed by Annabelle Selldorf, is ideal for showing large-scale painting and sculpture. “It will give us a lot of flexibility,” he says. “When this building became available, it was impossible to resist.” Skarstedt opened with a bang with “Klein + Warhol: Fire and Oxidation Paintings,” capitalizing on the contemporary art auctions and Frieze Art Fair. “It’s the perfect time to open,” he says.
Skarstedt, 20 East 79th Street, New York, NY 10075, skarstedt.com