Tchotchke Gallery founders Danielle Dewar and Marlee Katz on their partnership with the inaugural Buy Now Artnet exhibition
Like so many large companies, Tchotchke Gallery started out as a simple “what if”. When founders Danielle Dewar and Marlee Katz first met as colleagues at an aftermarket-focused white cube gallery in Manhattan, they longed for something new. âWe joked about making a gallery together, because we wanted to work with living artists,â Katz explained. âWe had a desire to work with people our age and show work that we loved, and maybe could even afford. We never thought this could actually happen.
But when the pandemic sent the world in and the art world online, Dewar and Katz took the plunge and founded Tchotchke, a playful and inviting virtual gallery that opposes the often inaccessible aura. from the art world. For one week only, Artnet is proud to partner with Galerie Tchotchke for our inaugural Buy Now exhibition, In Technicolor, with 13 vibrant works by seven emerging artists.
Artnet’s brand new Buy Now initiative, led by Emma Fastenberg, offers collectors the ability to purchase artwork on demand, with the click of a button. Given Artnet’s long history in the digital space, the decision to partner with Tchotchke, an online gallery with a philosophy of inclusiveness and accessibility, came naturally.
The Tchotchke Gallery takes its name from a Yiddish word for a small, inexpensive decorative trinket. As they reimagined the concept of the gallery as a whole, Dewar and Katz wanted their name to reflect warmth and inclusiveness: âBy sharing similar intrinsic values, we agreed that as representatives of the gallery, we wanted to be accessible to collectors, artists, everyone, âDewar said. Katz also noted a desire to redefine the Yiddish word, presenting a tchotchke as a rich collector’s item of value that extends beyond sentimentality.
Even as galleries reopen and in-person events abound, Dewar and Katz emotionally reflect on the benefits of a virtual gallery, which include the ability to work with artists and collectors from around the world. In fact, their biggest collector lives outside of the United States. âWe’re able to build relationships with collectors anywhere, and they don’t necessarily have to enter the gallery space,â Katz said. âThere are no barriers to entry. You may know a lot about art, or you may not know a lot about art, but you can connect with us no matter who or where you are. Accessibility and inclusiveness are extremely important to us.
The same is true of the artists that the Tchotchke gallery exhibits. In Technicolor features works by seven artists from cities across the United States and Israel, including Charlotte, Brooklyn, Chicago and Tel Aviv. Much like the millennium, many artists from Tchotchke were discovered via Instagram.
Dewar and Katz also take pride in educating collectors and artists. The duo host Instagram Live conversations with artists, allowing collectors to get to know them on a personal level. Dewar also began sending artists a disposable 35-millimeter camera to document their studio and daily life. The images are published on the gallery’s blog, Ta’am (another ode to a Yiddish word meaning “good taste”). Supporting artists is also a crucial part of Tchotchke’s mission, from those they represent (Josiah Ellner, Elena Redmond and Rachael Tarravechia) to those with whom they have worked only briefly. Each month, Dewar and Katz share a list of grant opportunities with their artists. They also offered them a financial literacy class, covering topics such as investing and paying off art school loans.
Someday the duo hope to provide more frequent in-person opportunities for their artists, but right now they’re embracing the digital landscape and the ripe opportunity to stand up for the artists they love. âThe art world is changing and young artists are having a well-deserved time right now,â said Dewar. “We just want to be there for it and help them in any way we can.”
Don’t miss the opportunity to bring home a tchotchke. The exquisite works of Dustin Brown, Josiah Ellner, Drew Englander, Noa Ironic, Yoora Lee, Elena Redmond and Rachael Tarravechia are available now at affordable prices – no auction required.
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