After 22 years, Bushwick based non-profit art gallery and project space, NURTUREart, announced in a letter to the public it will be closing its doors at the end of this season. Despite being a strong community space for emerging artists, independent curators, as well as a foundation for public school art programs, the letter states that the organization will be closing “due to a confluence of resource challenges and a shifting environment for non-profits.”
NURTUREart was founded by George J. Robinson in 1997 as a non-profit to help emerging artists begin their career. Since then, the gallery has “presented 17 full seasons of six to eight exhibitions each in our own galleries, in addition to many curatorial projects at guest locations around the city.” They also developed a comprehensive online registry that includes the work of over 2,100 emerging artists and curators.
Originally located in Williamsburg, NURTUREart moved to Bogart street where it became a vital part of the community. In their farewell letter, they explained how moving “to bigger and better spaces in response to gentrification and the shifting locus of emerging art” allowed them to be a major player in sustaining Bushwick’s local art scene, earning recognition from major publications such as Artforum, Hyperallergic, and the Brooklyn Rail.
Unfortunately, NURTUREart isn’t the first Bushwick gallery to be shutting its doors due to lack of resources. SOHO20, NURTUREart’s neighboring gallery, announced last month it will suspending their programming as they “contemplate directional shifts.” Like NURTUREart, SOHO20 is a non-profit art gallery that started with a purpose to give a voice to emerging artists, particularly women and those of marginalized communities.
In addition to their prolific exhibition history, NURTUREart’s Education Outreach Program had “161 artists and 11 curators teach 1,170 public school students in four neighboring schools’ classrooms, as well as through gallery and studio visits.” The program generated opportunities for over 80 artists through its 35 exhibitions.
“I encourage all those who have contributed to and benefited from NURTUREart to please reach out to others you’ve met and worked with along the way and continue nurturing those emerging artists and curators such that by extension and the multiplier effect the nurturance will continue to enrich our communities well beyond the boundaries of atelier and gallery walls,” Robinson stated at the end of the gallery’s farewell letter.
Images courtesy of NURTUREarts.
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