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Gallery 3209: A Space for Music and Art

May 3, 2012
Spotlight Category: Alumni
Denni Zelikowsky (’07 Fine Arts)
Director, Gallery 3209
Gallery 3209 shows up-and-coming artists as well as mid-career artists and musicians. I want to create a platform that fuses art and music for people who wouldn’t ordinarily go to a contemporary art gallery.
Starting up
Curating shows has helped me stay inspired and connected to other artists and curators. I am constantly doing studio visits, and after each visit I always feel the need to create my own work. At Otis I had a tight-knit group of friends and colleagues who made work that I admired. One passed away in 2009, and I wanted to produce a group show rather than a memorial show. I used a gallery space, and hand-picked some artists from Otis. From there, Gallery 3209 was born. I initially looked at the gallery as a side project that was secondary to my art practice. The first show I ever put on was so surprisingly successful that it made me rethink my career goals. I love the idea of sharing my vision, and exposing emerging artists to the public. I think that our generation understands the need for something beyond art and names on gallery and museum walls. We are looking for a sense of newness and innovative ways of exhibiting art.
Biggest challenge
I’m learning as I go along. I have had previous experience working for galleries, but running a one-woman show is a new experience. Finding the work that I believe the audience will be stimulated by is always the greatest challenge. I try to straddle the line between seriousness and lightness.
Thank you, Otis!
Otis has given me the tools to run a gallery alone. I studied fine arts but within my major, I learned so much about editing, graphic design, hanging work, art theory, etc. The mentors I studied with gave me the strength and skills to function as a multimedia artist. That carries into my work as a gallerist. Otis’ facilities and faculty prepare you for anything that comes your way.