In the last year, even gallery hopping has gone virtual. Tchotchke Gallery launched in 2020 as a digital-only space committed to highlighting emerging artists. Since its opening, the gallery has exhibited over 30 artists on its website. “Using our platform to showcase artists we stand behind and having the ability to educate our audience on their practice in a creative way is monumental for us,” said founders Marlee Katz and Danielle Dewar.
Today, Tchotchke launched its first duo exhibition, New York Isn’t F*cking Dead, featuring new works by Brooklyn-based artists, Rachael Tarravechia and Anthony Eslick. We checked in with Katz and Dewar to talk about the exhibition and their long-term goals for the gallery.
What inspired you to launch Tchotchke Gallery?
While navigating the ins-and-outs of secondary market life at the former gallery where we both worked, we often found ourselves daydreaming and planning what it would be like to create our own space. Through this, we formed a strong personal relationship alongside our initial professional connection. This is how we discovered that we had similar goals supporting the trajectory of emerging artists; thus, our objective came to fruition with the launch of Tchotchke Gallery.
What have you found to be the most rewarding parts of the business?
Undoubtedly, working with and discovering new artists has been the most rewarding part of our business. Using our platform to showcase artists we stand behind and having the ability to educate our audience on their practice in a creative way is monumental for us. As well, collaborating with brands and working on projects that connect art with design and fashion is a space that has been so amazing to be involved in. We are excited to continue to expand what art-making means across all boundaries.
Can you tell me a little bit about this current exhibition? What sets it apart from the ones you have done in the past?
Our first duo exhibition features two Brooklyn-based artists, Rachael Tarravechia and Anthony Eslick. In this new body of work, Tarravechia and Eslick explore the gritty yet elegant reality of an ever-resilient New York City. The sentiment sheds light on the creatives and artists that continue to shape the city through strength and tenacity, a retort to the recent claim that New York is “dead.”
We are celebrating the working artists, creatives, and culture shapers who have remained supportive of their New York communities during the global pandemic. The exhibition also looks at what the city’s future holds based on the power of today’s artists who remain active in a crisis that has heavily impacted the arts.
Collaboration beyond fine art has set this exhibition apart from our past shows. This expansion into fashion, photography, styling and design furthers the notion that New York isn’t “dead.” There is so much spirit in all the different, yet united, communities that we work with. We feel lucky to be able to join forces with such creative people who are all working towards the same goal.
What are your goals for the gallery? Anything on the horizon that you’re looking forward to?
Growth and building a collective around the artists and creatives that we work with are most important to our gallery. Sharing artist’s work in a way that is both engaging and educational, while staying true to our mission and brand identity continues to be a primary goal for us. We have two exciting exhibitions on the horizon: one in partnership with Good Naked, an NYC gallery whose ideals parallel ours, and our fall exhibition which partners with Luke Fracher, a leading LA fashion-name and co-owner of Round Two. As we grow, we will continue to build and collaborate with brands we love and support, and look forward to a brick-and-mortar location in the future!