In an ever-changing international art market, New York City remains the most attractive location for art and galleries spaces alike. As of 2018, there are an estimated 1,500 galleries in the city alone making it the largest concentration of galleries in the world.
Monique Meloche, the founder, and owner of the Monique Meloche Gallery in Chicago (and a three-time pop-up veteran of Parasol Projects) gives us a bit of insight into her experience popping-up in the art Mecca of New York.
For Meloche it has always been about the experience of the art, “We had been doing the Armory Show for about fours years and it’s always been very good. But in 2016, I started to think about what we were going to do with the two artists I wanted to show. Both Ebony G. Patterson and Sanford Biggers are artists who make larger than life artworks. It’s going to get lost in an Art Fair.”
Meloche learned of Parasol Projects by word of mouth and quickly ditched the art fair scene for her very own pop-up experience. Opening the doors to her first NYC gallery exhibition at our 2 Rivington location had her hooked, as “The opening night was even more crowded than an opening night here in [Chicago]! Everybody was super excited. It worked out stupendously.”
Most galleries tend to opt for your traditional art fair booth with guaranteed exposure to international collectors. Though a pop-up cannot replace the upstream PR work and aura of an art fair, it was well worth it for Meloche who “.. sold out the exhibition on opening night. There were museum curators. People from all over the world came. After the second day, we were ready to sign-up for the next year.”
The following year, Meloche returned to our 2 Rivington location presenting a solo exhibition by a little known Baltimore painter named Amy Sherald. No longer “little known”, Sherald gained notable success after being chosen to complete a classic portrait of the first lady, Michelle Obama which now lives at National Portrait Gallery in Washington D.C.
Meloche owes her success to her hard work and flair for exposing the world to overlooked and talented artists with social elements in their work.“This is what I’ve been doing for 16 years. I do think the artist can make a change. Amy Sherald painting Michelle Obama’s portrait has changed the lives of so many people who have [gone] to see it.”