Smolin Gallery

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The Smolin Gallery was an avant-garde art venue and gallery on 57th Street in New York City,[1] at its peak in the 1960s. It was known for its involvement with installation art, performance art and experimental art, and was best known for the Allan Kaprow assemblage performance of September 11-12 1962 entitled "Words",[2] believed to be the first allowing the audience to participate in an art gallery context. Kaprow "used two continual rolls of cloth with words from poems, newspapers, comic and telephone books" during which the audience were asked to "tear off the words, staple them together, write notes, even attack and hack them".[3] Verbal fragments were pasted on the walls from floor to ceiling.[4]

In 1963 the Smolin Gallery sponsored two innovative Wolf Vostell events on TV; the first, Wolf Vostell and Television Decollage, featured visitors to the gallery who were encouraged to use their own DIY liquids to create poster art on the walls. [5] In April 1963, Lima and Tony Towle gave their first public recital at the gallery.[1] In 1963 the gallery sponsored the Yam Festival and the gallery served as an information center during the event. The Yam Festival held on a farm in South Brunswick, New Jersey was venue on 19 May 1963 to actions and happenings by artists including Dick Higgins, Allan Kaprow, La Monte Young and Wolf Vostell who made the happening TV Burying.[6] [7]

In 1965, Doris Totten Chase gave her first solo New York exhibition at the Smolin Gallery, featuring paintings on wood.[8] She exhibited a series of small painted sculptures inset with hinged sections which opened to reveal additional painted sections.

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  1. ^ a b Diggory, Terence (2009). Encyclopedia of the New York School Poets. Infobase Publishing. p. 310. ISBN 978-1-4381-1905-2. 
  2. ^ Hendricks, Geoffrey (2003). Critical Mass: Happenings, Fluxus, Performance, Intermedia, and Rutgers University, 1958-1972. Rutgers University Press. p. 186. ISBN 978-0-8135-3303-2. 
  3. ^ "When New York Was Really Happening". 14 February 2012. Retrieved 4 December 2013. 
  4. ^ Banes, Sally; Baryshnikov, Mikhail (2003). Reinventing Dance in the 1960s: Everything was Possible. Univ of Wisconsin Press. p. 13. ISBN 978-0-299-18014-0. 
  5. ^ Salter, Chris (2010). Entangled: Technology and the Transformation of Performance. MIT Press. p. 122. ISBN 978-0-262-19588-1. 
  6. ^ Banes, Sally (1983). Democracy's Body: Judson Dance Theater, 1962-1964. Duke University Press. p. 131. ISBN 978-0-8223-1399-1. 
  7. ^ Wolf Vostell TV Burying
  8. ^ Who, Inc. Marquis Who's (1991). Who's Who of American Women, 1991-1992. Marquis Who's Who. p. 2147. ISBN 978-0-8379-0417-7.