Gavin Spanierman recollects past success and explores future plans
IN APRIL 2014, GAVIN SPANIERMAN AND GERALD PETERS MERGED THEIR NEW YORK GALLERIES BRINGING AN ENORMOUS ROSTER OF BOTH PUBLIC AND PRIVATE CLIENTS A WIDE OFFERING OF MUSEUM QUALITY WORKS OF AMERICAN ART. THE LASTING EFFECTS OF THIS COLLABORATION THAT SPANS THE ART OF THREE CENTURIES WILL COME INTO FULL FRUITION THIS FALL. I, FOR ONE, LOOK FORWARD TO THE EXHIBITIONS THAT GP GALLERY IS PLANNING, THEIR EXPANDED PRESENCE AT ART FAIRS, AND THE ROSTER OF CONTEMPORARY ARTISTS THAT THEY ANTICIPATE ADDING TO THE GALLERY LOCATED IN A BEAUTIFUL TOWNHOUSE AT 24 EAST 78th STREET, BETWEEN FIFTH AND MADISON AVENUES, ON THE UPPER EAST SIDE OF MANHATTAN. THIS BUILDING INCORPORATES TWO FLOORS OF EXHIBITION SPACE, SEVERAL PRIVATE VIEWING ROOMS, A LIBRARY, STORAGE FACILITIES AND OFFICES AND, MOST IMPORTANTLY, A DIVERSE AND EXCEPTIONAL INVENTORY OF WESTERN ART, HUDSON RIVER SCHOOL PAINTING, AMERICAN IMPRESSIONISM AND AMERICAN MODERNISM. www.gpgallery.com
GAVIN SPANIERMAN BRINGS A UNIQUE ENERGY AND ENTREPRENEURIAL SPIRIT TO VETERAN DEALER AND COLLECTOR, GERALD PETERS, AND IT IS A PLEASURE TO CONTINUE OUR CONVERSATION TODAY IN THE LRFA BLOG.
GAVIN, WHAT ARE SOME OF THE MOST MEMORABLE WORKS THAT HAVE PASSED THROUGH YOUR HANDS AND WHY?
I have had the privilege of handling some very special works in my career. The Cummer Museum in Florida acquired one of the last great Twachtman waterfall paintings painted on his property in Greenwich. Crystal Bridges acquired a marvelous work by George Pettit, a little known Philadelphia portrait and allegorical painter from the 19th century. The painting is entitled The Union Refugees, and it depicts several familial groups fleeing what appear to be their burned out Southern homesteads. I placed an extraordinary Homer painting with a private collector that depicts two young boys in a meadow laying on their stomachs courting a young girl. The LA County Museum of Art acquired a great Albert Bloch painting titled Boy Eating an Apple. Bloch was from St. Louis but traveled to Berlin in 1910 where he was introduced to the work of Kandinsky, Franz Marc, and the other German Expressionists. He was so taken by their work that he invited Kandinsky and Marc to his studio to see his painting. They were so impressed that they invited him to exhibit with them, and the rest of the Blau Rider group despite the fact that he was American.
ARE THERE CERTAIN COMMON TRAITS THAT GREAT COLLECTORS SHARE, AND IF SO, WHAT ARE THEY?
My favorite collectors are passionate about their areas of interest. They are interested not only in the aesthetics but also the importance of the artist, the quality and condition of the work, and how historically significant it is within the artist’s oeuvre.
WHAT ARE YOUR IDEAS FOR GALLERY EXPANSION? DO YOU SUPPORT THE MORE TRADITIONAL CONCEPT OF A STAFF THAT WORKS TOGETHER SUPPORTING THE ARTISTS, EXHIBITIONS AND INVENTORY SALES AS A TEAM? DO YOU THINK THERE ARE MORE PRODUCTIVE AND COMPETITIVE WAYS TO STRUCTURE A GALLERY?
I think the formula for a successful gallery has changed radically. The increased competition from the auction houses, the transparency in the market as well as the globalization of the art market that the internet provides require a gallery to be more price conscious than in the past. Participating in art fairs, however costly, has also become necessary to remain competitive. We will continue to deal in the very highest quality traditional American paintings ranging from the 19th century to early Modernism. The area of expansion will be to develop the contemporary program to represent more significant artists and artists’ estates, as well as to participate in more of the art fairs that focus on post-war, modern art. We are scheduled to participate in Expo Chicago in September as well as Art Miami in December.
IN THE NEXT LRFA BLOG, WE WILL HAVE THE OPPORTUNITY TO EXPLORE THE LATEST OUTSTANDING NEW TECHNICAL TOOLS THAT EXHIBIT-e, THE WEB DESIGN TEAM FOR THE ART WORLD, HAS CAREFULLY RESEARCHED AND DEVELOPED OVER THE LAST THREE YEARS. EXHIBIT-e HAS LAUNCHED AN INVENTORY MANAGEMENT SYSTEM THAT PROVIDES A WEB-BASED SOLUTION FOR TRACKING EVERY ASPECT OF A GALLERY INVENTORY OR PRIVATE COLLECTION. THE SYSTEM COVERS EVERY ASPECT OF AN ART TRANSACTION, CONTACTS, THE OWNERSHIP HISTORY OR PROVENANCE OF A WORK, AS WELL AS RECORDING AUXILIARY COSTS OF OWNING OR HANDLING A WORK, EVERYTHING FROM THE COST OF PHOTOGRAPHY, FRAMING, INSTALLATION, SHIPPING AND INSURANCE. IN THIS 2.0 WORLD OF GLOBAL ART FAIRS AND AN INTERNATIONAL ART MARKET, A 2.0 SYSTEM FACILITATES THE MAINTENANCE OF GALLERY INVENTORY OR PERSONAL HOLDINGS.
I LOOK FORWARD TO SHARING THEIR NEW DEVELOPMENTS AND CASE STUDIES WITH YOU AND WILL PASS ON ANY TECH QUESTIONS THAT YOU MIGHT HAVE FOR THEIR EXPERT REPLIES AND KNOWLEDGE.