The Best Use We Have Ever Heard Of For A Taco Bell

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From left, Emma Fernberger, associate director of the Bortolami Gallery; the dealer Stefania Bortolami; and the artist Tom Burr in the former Pirelli Tire Company building in New Haven, where Mr. Burr plans an installation as part of the gallery’s “Artist/City” initiative. Credit Christopher Gregory for The New York Times

We do not bother complaining about fast food on this platform, but we are happy to pass along this story about re-purposing a fast food site:

Art Dealers Move Out of the Gallery and Into a Taco Bell

By

Stefania Bortolami still recalls, with cathartic exultation, the moment she decided to display her art in a slower, smaller way. It was May 2015, and Ms. Bortolami, the owner of the Bortolami Gallery in Manhattan, was at the art fair Frieze New York — her sixth such gathering of the year.

“By then, we were fair-exhausted, and the hanging and rehanging of our booths had drained our souls,” she said. “The trigger thought was: ‘I am craving meaning. This is all going too fast to make any sense.’”

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A view inside the former Pirelli Tire Company building, a Brutalist-style space in New Haven. Credit Christopher Gregory for The New York Times

When the fair was over, Ms. Bortolami began a series of internal conversations that resulted in a project called “Artist/City,” a continuing effort to move the artists she represents out of her gallery and into the world at large. It was a decision meant to make their work feel less like a packaged product, she said, and “to bring the discourse back to art.”

The received wisdom in the art world these days is that the markets through which artists interact with their audience are becoming more corporate and are increasingly ruled by cold, commercial forces that focus more on the bottom line and branding than on creative innovation.

For at least a decade, mega-galleries like Pace and Gagosian have dominated the fine-art landscape, showing work in Safeway-size spaces and at international branches, as well as at a string of art fairs across the globe. Last year, The Art Newspaper bemoaned this drift toward consolidation: After analyzing 600 art exhibitions in the United States, the publication issued a report that found that nearly a third of all solo museum shows in the country centered on artists represented by five of the world’s biggest galleries…

Read the whole story here.

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