Antenna Gallery

Gallery Spotlight: Antenna Gallery

During the summer of 2005, New Orleans resident Anne Gisleson and her friends were in the midst of developing Intersection New Orleans, a collaboration that encouraged 25 pairs of artists and writers to find inspiration in 25 intersections throughout the city. After Hurricane Katrina ravaged the city, Gisleson and her friends were determined to regroup and continue providing a cultural refuge for locals.

“It was just kind of an imperative need to start doing things after the storm, because nothing was happening culturally, for obvious reasons,” Gisleson says.

The informal art shows and literary events that the group hosted in the months after the storm led to the formation of Press-Street later that year. In 2008, Gisleson and her partners opened Antenna, a gallery space on St. Claude Street in the city’s Upper Ninth Ward. Their intent with Antenna was to create a place that would support and inspire the local creative community by focusing on cutting-edge contemporary art.

“It’s a space where the commercial end is taken out of the equation,” Gisleson says. “It’s a space where people can do the sort of projects that they wouldn’t be able to do in a for-profit gallery, which tends to be a bit safer and market oriented.”

Antenna Gallery

Extra Extra Gallery

Gallery Spotlight: Extra Extra

When Dan Wallace, Derek Frech, and Joe Lacina started Extra Extra in 2009, they had relocated to Philadelphia and were discovering the city’s growing art scene.  The three initially met at the Maryland Institute College of Art and planned to eventually open an art space.

“Initially, a lot of people were interested [in starting a space], but then it just dwindled down to the few that were actually devoted to it,” Wallace says. “So we moved to Philadelphia with the intention of starting a space.”

Extra Extra Gallery

Extra Extra is one of a handful of artist-run spaces in Philadelphia. Wallace, Frech, and Lacina wanted the space to provide a platform that would allow artists to create work that could challenge the traditional notions of what art, an artist, or a gallery could be.

Extra Extra Gallery
Jon Rafman and Tabor Robak's "BNPJ.exe"


Gallery Spotlight: Tenderpixel

Etan Ilfeld started Tenderpixel Gallery, located in Central London, in a rather spontaneous fashion back in 2007.  After obtaining a master’s degree in film studies, Ilfeld decided to relocate from Southern California to London to pursue a second master’s in interactive media from Goldsmiths, University of London. He felt that Tenderpixel would be a perfect reason to stay in London and become more acquainted with the city’s contemporary art scene.

“My landlord had a vacant store, which I thought I could experiment with and provide as a platform for some of the artists that I met at Goldsmiths,” Ilfeld says. “I initially had no idea how it would all develop, and it just grew organically.”

Tenderpixel is a tiny space (less than 65 square feet) that acts as a creative incubator for artists. Many of the artists that are invited to exhibit usually showcase work that is highly conceptualized.

Gallery Spotlight: LMAKprojects

In 2005, art curator Louky Keijsers Koning created LMAKprojects in New York City in order to give emerging international artists a space where they could develop professionally while building connections with new audiences. LMAK — an abbreviation of Louky’s full name, Louky Marie Antoinette Keijsers — consisted of a main gallery in Manhattan’s Chelsea District as well as a supplementary project space in Williamsburg. The dual-space setup allowed LMAKprojects to simultaneously create innovative and engaging art shows while building a solid reputation within New York’s mainstream art scene.

In 2009, Louky’s husband and fellow art curator Bart Keijsers Koning began focusing on LMAK full time. That same year, the couple decided to relocate its gallery and project space to Manhattan’s Lower East Side, an area that was receptive to its intent of engaging audiences with thought-provoking conceptual art.

“The nice thing that the Lower East Side is doing is drawing crowds that are very serious about art and what to engage, and [they] really look,” Bart says.


Sonnenzimmer: Chicago’s DIY Printmaking Powerhouse

Nadine Nakanishi and Nick Butcher, owners of Sonnenzimmer screen-printing studio in Chicago’s Roscoe Village, were drawn to the art from a young age, and now create posters for bands like The Sea and Cake and Tokyo Police Club.

Secret Project Robot

Gallery Spotlight: Secret Project Robot

In 2004, Rachel Nelson and Erik Zajaceskowski, along with a few friends, formed Secret Project Robot in Williamsburg, New York with the intent of fostering conversation among Brooklyn’s creatives by bringing innovative art and performances to anyone who is interested.

“Is there art if nobody sees it?” Nelson asks. “Yes, of course there is, but not on this whole social level.  We figured we could get people to talk about it and have this whole dialogue.”

Secret Project Robot is focused on creating a solid sense of community through events and exhibits with a postmodern approach that allows for audience participation. “The viewer is completing the work of art,” Nelson says. The multipurpose venue features installation pieces and shows by a number of Brooklyn-based bands.

Shetler and Ivory Serra

KRETS Gallery

Gallery Spotlight: KRETS Gallery

In 2007, Anna Granqvist and Cindy Lee, along with fellow friends Ellinor Bjelm and Henrik Kihlberg, created KRETS Gallery, one of Malmö, Sweden’s first progressive contemporary art spaces. KRETS (a word that has multiple meanings in Swedish) can refer to a shared interest in something, and, in this case, encapsulates the founders’ love of presenting thought-provoking art that wouldn’t be available elsewhere.

“It was our shared interest in, and passion for, art and music that led us to opening a space where we could show and spread what otherwise have been invisible around here to a wider audience,” Granqvist says.

Granqvist and Lee, who are now KRETS’ sole owners, are both originally from Orebro, a smaller town in northern Sweden. Though they attended the same high school, they didn’t actually meet and become friends until they bonded over a shared interest in contemporary art at the Full Pull music festival in Malmö.

KRETS Gallery


Gallery Spotlight: Disjecta

There is typically a sense of finality when an artist’s work is displayed on a gallery’s walls. It’s all about showcasing the finished product, and as a result, the viewer is usually unaware of the creative process that went into each piece. Gallery owner Byran Suereth would rather put the focus on an artist’s disjecta — the fragments and revisions that eventually form a final piece. So when Suereth formed his gallery in 2000, he thought Disjecta would be a fitting namesake. “Disjecta was an interesting name, and it also had a connotation for what we do as an arts institution,” Suereth says.


As Suereth started Disjecta, Portland’s burgeoning art scene consisted primarily of artists and collectives that operated informally out of warehouses. It was his peers’ DIY approach and the city’s creative energy that sparked his idea to create a gallery of his own. “For the first two years of Disjecta, we really fed off of that spirit,” Suereth says. “I wanted the ability to create and to give people in the space the ability to create.”