If you glance at the itinerary of an out-of-town collector paying New York a quick visit, you’re sure to see a list of big names and usual suspects: David Zwirner, Cheim & Read, Gagosian (x4), and a whole lotta addresses ending in 10011. Surely there’s enough Chelsea hotspots and Upper East Side powerhouses to occupy anyone’s long weekend (hop over to ArtBinder Viewer for a feast of options), but there are plenty of unique, unconventional, and otherwise off-the-radar spaces that might not be known to those stopping in to make the rounds. Collectors in the market for a truly textured plunge into the city’s artistic jungle should pencil in these five fantastic spots.
Center for Italian Modern Art
Those looking for a hidden gem in NYC’s bustling art world will not be disappointed by the Center for Italian Modern Art. This research center and exhibition space in SoHo is dedicated to spreading the word about great Italian artists whose work is rarely displayed in the United States. Be aware, visitors must book an appointment in order to see their annual installations. A cup of espresso is offered upon arrival, adding to the homey feel of the exhibition space. Bellissimo!
Address: 421 Broome Street, New York, NY 10013
Luxembourg & Dayan
This gallery exhibited the wildly popular Alex Da Corte show Die Hexe last spring, and has numerous acclaimed artists such as Frank Stella and Marcel Duchamp under its belt. While Luxembourg & Dayan may not be “off-the-radar,” they are certainly unconventional and keep us on our toes. We included them on this list because each exhibit at Luxembourg & Dayan provides a fresh visitor experience; it’s like walking into a new gallery each time. (Also, their front door is kind of hard to find).
Address: 64 East 77th Street, New York, NY, 10075
By way of witchcraft or a massive subterranean magnet, Bushwick has attracted a veritable army of tremendously gifted artists, musicians, and gallerists over the course of recent years. There’s now no shortage of alternative art spaces and specialized venues to be found in this locale, and the works-on-paper gallery Schema Projects sits proudly among them as a wellspring of drawings, prints, artists books, and more.
Address: 92 St Nicholas Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11237
Art in FLUX
Since 2012, Harlem’s Art in FLUX has served as one of the borough’s most vital artistic infrastructures, broadening access to the arts community through its unconventional pop-ups in lobbies, restaurants, and empty retail spaces. Those interested should keep an eye on their ever-growing calendar, and, of course, try to make it to their Frieze satellite fair.
SVA Chelsea Gallery
From the (old) old-school days of apprenticeship up to the current landscape of MFA programs, artists have long honed their chops in the classroom before blazing into the market, and student galleries remain hotspots for works by up-and-comers. The School of Visual Art’s Chelsea Gallery proves a consistently vital presence, with students having shared its walls with notables like Anish Kapoor, Elizabeth Peyton, and Richard Avedon (all—you guessed it—SVA alums). SVA Chelsea is only one of many student galleries gracing Manhattan, and with gems like Cooper Union’s 41 Cooper and Fordham University’s Ildiko Butler Gallery dotting the island, you’d be best advised to dig out your trapper-keeper and go back to school.
Address: 209 East 23 Street, New York, NY 10010