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Art October, 13 2011

Preview and Curated Q&A | “You Are Here: Washington D.C.” at Dorian Grey Gallery

Sometimes, an art show’s theme is not a gimmick, but a real story about the lives of its artists. In “You Are Here: Washington D.C.,” a show opening at Dorian Grey Gallery in New York’s East Village, the theme is strictly geographical, and the story is about a first-time curator from D.C. who gathered some of her most talented friends and members of the art community together for a monthlong show in New York. For some of the artists, this is the first time a New York audience will see their work, and for the one-year-old gallery, this show is the first that expands beyond the East Village and New York.

“You Are Here” will run October 15 – November 13. Artists showing include Trevor Young, Alexa Meada, Ryan Florig, Adrian Parsons, Marissa Long, Billy Colbert, Lily DeSaussure and Joey Manlapaz.

We caught up with the curator, Danielle Vu, and the gallery owner, Luis Accorsi to discuss the show, New York and art in general.

Dorian Grey Gallery
437 E 9th St.
New York NY 10009

Images and interview after the jump.

Tell me a little bit about how the show came about?

Luis Accorsi: Out of the blue, I offered Danielle. I said Danielle, if you want to curate to show of Washington artists. And by allowing Danielle to curate it, we’re going to host a show of very independent, very un-similar works; they’re not interbred. But there’s this electrical line that ties things together even when they’re disjointed and not related. I think that’s what happened with the artists she’s chosen: They’re not doing anything similar to everyone else.

We’ve never done anything reaching outside of the graffiti or East Village…everything has been historical. But we are going to start looking for other locations and other art communities where art is considered secondary and is not the primary focus of that city’s culture. We might go back and do another D.C. show and spotlight some of the city’s more obscure art. I don’t know if its something we’ll continue to do, but it was an opportunity I wanted in on. We’ll see what happens with it.

How did you go about curating this show? What has been the response so far?

(Danielle Vu, curator): Well I really wanted to focus more on representing D.C., and I felt like having a theme within a theme was a bit much, so the connection between all the artists and the works is mostly geography. This is my first forray into the D.C. fine arts world and everyone has been incredibly supportive and excited about this show; all the artists are excited to be working with me and each other. It has given me more insight in terms of the music and arts community in D.C. I’m happy to embrace and support new artists and help put them on the same platform as some of the more established artists in the show.

So have you encountered any negativity or “bumps in the road” as you started putting the show together, since this is your first?

Surprisingly, no. I was nervous because I am essentially a “no name” in the art world, so some artists I just emailed out of the blue, and I was nervous people would be skeptical of me and my intentions and wouldn’t want to work with me. But everyone I asked said yes… I was really amazed. In fact, one of the artists who is in my show said “what artist doesn’t want to show his work?”

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