BY SCOTT STIFFLER | After a full decade spent operating as an arts collective whose identity was forged by the widely divergent ways of its members, the 70+ artists participating in the 11th Annual Artists’ Open Studios event are rallying behind a single theme meant to celebrate the timeless tenacity of the independent, working artist.
Taking place as New York City’s fully vaccinated make their way into the world again after a long, strange stretch of time spent sheltering in place ands socializing online, the Open Studios membership issued this joint statement in advance of this weekends’s annual self-guided walking tour of workspaces peppered throughout West Chelsea:
“Like many artists in this city, we felt Resilient was an apt description of our current state. We’ve done our best to keep pushing forward and continued to do the only thing that was within our control—we kept creating. For us, it was the act of art-making that helped us cope during these chaotic times.
Many of the works that will be on view in our studios were made during the pandemic. All represent the breadth of art that perhaps commented on, were inspired by, reacted against, or, were created in spite of these unprecedented times. We invite you, the public, to experience each piece that helped us persevere, and provided direction in moments of uncertainty. We welcome the community of New York City as both our audience and as our critical support structure to visit our historic neighborhood during this historic moment.”
Those who make their way across the tour’s coverage area—including, no doubt, fresh participants coming from the Armory Show at the nearby Javits Center—will see a West Chelsea transformed as much by the pandemic as it was by Hurricane Sandy. As with that 2012 watershed moment, COVID-19 forced its share of deep-rooted galleries to close or relocate, further inspiring this year’s focus on resiliency.
If “Resilient” emerged as the winner for Theme of Choice, “Varied” gets our vote for Miss Congeniality. Artworks, the events press release tells us, will be available “in a wide range of media including — but not limited to— painting, sculpture, photography, mixed-media, textiles, prints, collage, street art, and much more! While typically only accessible by appointment, visitors will be granted access “behind the scenes” to explore each artist’s creative space. The intimate setting gives collectors the rare opportunity to purchase artworks directly from the artists’ inventory without the gallery markup. It’s also a fantastic way to discover new emerging talent while their work is still affordable.”
Sunday, September 12, noon to 6pm. Self-Guided Tour Maps can be picked up in the lobby of 526 W. 26th St. (btw. 10th & 11th Aves.) or downloaded by clicking on this website www.highlineopenstudio.org.
2021 Participating Artists & Art Organizations: Dayana Beisenova | Katherine Blackburne | Joan Blair | Suzanne Bond | Sadie Bridger | Richard Buchanan | Julia Chen | Tom Cocotos | Ryan Davis | Daniel Dawson | Veleria Deminova | Marian Doherty | Angela Errico | Ailene Fields | Groupp Gallery | First Street Gallery | Six Summit Gallery | Spirit del Art Gallery | Amparo Garzon | Caroline Gates | Trine Giaever | Paul Michael Graves | Timon YC I | Yumiko Hirokawa | The Leo House | Jennifer Joanou | Steven Anthony Johnson ll | Wilson Hand Kidde | Irina Lakshin | Alicia Lang | Eunkyung Lee | Peter Leeds | Thomas Legaspi | Charlotte Lichtblau | Stella Lillig | Frances Maravelea | Margaret McCann | Ava McNamee | Cat Merrick | Gina Miccinilli | Irene Mimiye | Scotto Mycklebust | International Print Center NY | Paul Ott | Alexandra Pacula | Mark Paczkowski | Marc Potocsky | Silvestre Preciado | David Krut Projects, New York | Lucy Rahner | Frank Rivera | Cid Roberts | John Rohlfing | Monika Rosen | Barbara Rosenthal | Studio Toni Ross | Marianne Perry Salas | Veronique San Leandro | Damian Santucci | Susan Schwalb | Jordan Seiler | Rohini Sen | Gabriel J. Shuldiner | William Stuart | Kerry R. Thompson | Kati Vilim | Caroline Villard | Nancy Whitcher | Jim Xu | Wayne Young |
About: Spearheaded by a handful of artists working in West Chelsea, The High Line Open Studios evolved out of an annual grassroots movement in the early 2000s. By 2007, a group of four artists formalized the event under its current name, the High Line Open Studio. The collective’s objective is to support the careers of West Chelsea artists by organizing open studio events that are free to the public, and that draw visibility to their historic art neighborhood. The High Line Open Studios is organized and presented by West Chelsea artist, Scotto Mycklebust, artist/executive producer and the Public Art Squad Project. For further info, contact the event’s organizer, Scotto Mycklebust, by sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
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