Thank You: DODGE Gallery’s Final Show
By MARIA ANDERSON MAY 2014
As you may have heard, the dynamic DODGE Gallery will close its doors this month. This Lower East Side gallery, housed in a 2,500-square-foot former sausage factory on Rivington Street, has been around for four years and forty-two exhibitions. Noteworthy shows include Chuck Webster’s Age of Small Things Ellen Harvey’s The Nudist Museum Gift Shop and Jason Middlebrook’s A Break from Content. You might also remember the two solo exhibitions of Dave Cole's work, as well as the artist’s huge installation at DODGE’s Armory Show booth. Many are sad to see this place go and are curious as to why it’s closing. We spoke with Kristen Dodge to find out.
Dodge shared with us that the spirit in which she began the gallery has led her to a point at which the vision she had is no longer sustainable. “I’m closing the gallery because my idealism and ambition are clashing with the demands of a business model at large that courts limited creative risk and isn't financially viable,” she says.
Thank You is DODGE Gallery’s final show and the first time DODGE is exclusively exhibiting artists from their roster. “I look forward to seeing their works installed together, and to witnessing where these connect and diverge. This is a public assembly, a convergence of where we have been, and an opening up to our futures,” says Dodge. Some of these emerging and mid-career artists have been working with her for ten years. Seven she brought with her from Boston when she moved in 2010.
Dodge cites her staff as playing a major role in the gallery’s success; “The last four years have been truly incredible. Nothing that we have done would have been at such a consistently high caliber without the work of Patton Hindle and Andrew Judd. I will truly miss our dynamic and am grateful to them for their commitment and humor. For whom will I play the sound machine now?” The most gratifying high point for Dodge, however, has been being a part of the development and success of her artists’ careers. “It’s amazing that I had the opportunity to choose each of them, that they chose us, and that we did great things together. Thank You is a bittersweet send off,” she says.
There’s a line by poet Jack Gilbert that goes, “We find out the heart only by dismantling what the heart knows.” This seems to have been Dodge’s experience with this gallery: a disassembling of notions of how a new gallery should look and act in order to hone and strengthen her vision of what DODGE should be. She started big: she wanted to have a street-level location, to house concurrent exhibitions, and to be near the New Museum and other prominent spaces. Because of this, DODGE quickly became a place people remembered.
Thank You is a celebration of these four years, and if what she has done here is any indication, only a preview of what Dodge is capable of. The show runs from April 10th to the 24th and features work by Rebecca Chamberlain, Dave Cole, Taylor Davis, Darren Blackstone Foote, Ted Gahl, Sheila Gallagher, Ellen Harvey, Jane Fox Hipple, Jason Middlebrook, Daniel Phillips, Cordy Ryman, Environmental Services, and Lorna Williams.
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