The Gallery as Community Center – 4 examples

1. Dedee Shattuck Gallery, Westport, MA

Gallery in Westport MA
Dedee Shattuck Gallery photo courtesy of website of Dedee Shattuck Gallery website

Dedee Shattuck Gallery is a contemporary art gallery situated among acres of meadows and forests. The Gallery is inspired by Westport’s historic Quaker architecture. The Gallery exhibits an ever broadening selection of noted international, national, regional and emerging artists, establishing a cultural destination in the heart of Westport.

Mission: At the Shattuck, we serve contemporary artists and craftspeople as well as the local and global art communities by providing compelling exhibitions, enriching cultural events, and a forum for the exchange of creative thought and critical discussion about the arts. We emphasize the relationship between contemporary art and the environment. The Shattuck is primarily solar powered, features a sculpture garden, and hosts a sustainable artist residency program.

Text taken from Dedee Shattuck website

2. Hauser & Wirth Somerset, England

Hauser & Wirth Somerset, England photo courtesy of DeZeen magazine

One of the locations of Hauser & Wirth is sited at Durslade Farm in Somerset, southwest England, originally comprised a farmhouse, stables, cow sheds, a piggery, a threshing barn and other outbuildings dating from as far back as the 1760s. Hauser & Wirth currently has galleries in London, New York, Los Angeles and Zurich. The new Somerset building aims to offer educational opportunities for schools, families and other groups interested in art, architecture and sustainability. Alongside temporary exhibitions, the arts centre hosts an artist-in-residence programme so artists can enjoy working in the peaceful rural surroundings.

Text excerpt from Hauser & Wirth

3. Rebuild Foundation, Chicago, IL

Community Galleries, Rebuild Foundation Chicago
Interior of Stony Island Arts Bank, photo courtesy of Rebuild Foundation website

Rebuild Foundation is culture based, artist led, neighborhood driven and has branched off into many locations (see below). The mission is to rebuild the cultural foundations of underinvested neighborhoods and incite movements of community revitalization that are culture based, artist led, neighborhood driven.

a. The StonyIsland Arts Bank is a hybrid gallery, media archive, library and community center – and a home for Rebuild’s archives and collections and is a destination for artists, scholars, curators, and collectors to research and engage with South Side history.

b. The Black Cinema House hosts screenings and discussions of films by and about Black people and the issues shaping our lives. BCH also offers community video classes for youth and adults, encouraging our neighbors to explore their creativity, tell their own stories, and develop the skills to shape their own media images. BCH welcomes a diverse range of audiences, film artists, experts, enthusiasts, and collaborating organizations to engage in lively conversation about the past, present and future of moving images.

c. Dorchester Art + Housing Collaborative is a rehabilitated public housing project, a block of 32 townhomes that provides housing for artists and community members with the intent of fostering dialogue and collaboration between both groups. The DA+HC is mixed income housing and features an even distribution of artist, public, affordable rate, and market rate housing.

d. The Black Artists Retreat [B.A.R.] is an annual convening of black visual artists held in Chicago, IL. As an artist led initiative the Retreat is guided by the tenets of fellowship, rejuvenation, and intellectual rigor and strives to create time and space for an intergenerational community of black visual artists to engage outside of the institutional environment.

e. The Archive House is located next-door to the Listening House and serves as a gallery, micro library, community nexus, and one-time administrative hub for Rebuild Foundation. These collections, which are maintained as complete bodies of work, provide egalitarian access to knowledge and prompt questions about what it means to have world-class archives on the South Side of Chicago.

f. The Listening House has flexible spaces for a wide variety of programs, everything from Yaw Agyeman’s listening sessions to cartoon workshops with Pashfarda Arts & Cultural Exchange.

Text excerpts from Rebuild Foundation website

4. Zullo Gallery, Medfield, MA

Zullo Gallery Medfield, MA photo courtesy of Zullo Gallery website

The Gallery is open only on weekends, staffed by volunteers: artists, community members and high school students. Nevertheless, the Gallery is still able to present about sic exhibits a year, each approximately 7 weeks long. In addition to presenting art exhibits, the Gallery offers a number of live-music performances throughout the year featuring jazz, folk, classical and popular music. During the summer months and throughout the year, the Gallery offers art classes for students in grades 1-9. Additionally, the Gallery has presented poetry readings, a film series, and art workshops for adults

Text excerpts from Zullo Gallery website





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