From June 7 through July several of my paintings will be shown in the Hudson Valley Gallery in the Williamsburg neighborhood of Brooklyn, NY. This is a ‘window’ gallery, one of the many alternative spaces for exhibiting work that have cropped up in the city. The circa 1920 building has been owned since the 1980’s by Larry Silver, a gallerist who lives upstate outside Woodstock. A few years ago, Silver decided to turn his love of art into support for emerging artists and he began showing select works in the large window of the building’s bottom floor.
Hudson Valley Gallery, 132 Broadway at Bedford Avenue, Brooklyn, NY 11211. Information: 845.687.6146
Green Tomatoes. Oil on canvas, 50″x40″ 2003
Tiber Bridge. Oil on canvas, 24″x20″ 2007.
Pines. Oil on canvas panel, 18″x14″ 2008.
Spring. Oil on canvas panel 8″x10″ 2008.
The gallery is across the street from the renowned Williamsburg Art & Historical Center (WAH), a multicultural art center in the epicenter of the neighborhood’s artists’ community. Larry introduced me to the center’s founder, Yuko Nii, who just happened to be in the historic 1876 Landmark building, setting up an exhibit. Hers is an astounding story of dedication to the arts. She bought the building in the mid 90’s and established the foundation soon afterwards.
Currently on view; the Brooklyn College MFA Thesis show.
An excerpt from the center’s history;
In the late 1980s a trickle of artists began to flow into Williamsburg Brooklyn on the north side around Bedford Avenue because of cheap rents and the convenience of the subway to Manhattan just one stop away by L train. Artists began to open their studios as small pocket sized galleries and this began to attract weekend visitors, a few collectors, and even some museum and gallery folk from Manhattan. Little by little the small art colony grew. Meanwhile, the south side remained an underdeveloped area and was considered to be a “dangerous” place. Then in late 1996 the artist Yuko Nii bought the Kings County Savings Bank Building on the south side at the foot of the Williamsburg Bridge on Broadway at the corner of Bedford Avenue, and founded the not-for-profit Williamsburg Art & Historical Center (WAH Center), based upon her Bridge Concept. That concept envisions a multifaceted, multicultural art center whose mission is to coalesce the diverse artistic communities, and create a bridge between local, national and international artists, emerging as well as established artists of all disciplines. Thus through the international language of art we come to understand each other to create a more peaceful and integrated world. The WAH Center is truly a force for peace and understanding and it’s concept is incorporated in its acronym: “WAH” in Japanese means “peace” or “harmony” or “unity.” Nii also wanted to preserve the WAH Center’s building, a French Second Empire masterpiece, which is on the National Register of Historic Places and a New York City Landmark, and make it a functional part of the cultural community of Williamsburg, Brooklyn, NY.