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Vito Schnabel (born July 27, 1986) is an independent curator and art dealer based in New York City.
Schnabel curated his first group show at the age of 16 in a 10,000-square-foot warehouse. He then organized a retrospective of work by the artist Ron Gorchov, who had fallen into obscurity; it revived Gorchov's career and led to an exhibition at MoMA PS1.
In 2010 Schnabel produced the first Brucennial in collaboration with the Bruce High Quality Foundation, coinciding with the Whitney Biennial. The exhibition mixed the work of young, up-and-coming artists (including undergraduate art students) with established artists whose works are held in the permanent collections of the Museum of Modern Art, the Whitney Museum of American Art, the Guggenheim Museum, and the Metropolitan Museum of Art. The first Brucennial included works by more than 300 artists; some critics praised the show as more compelling than that year’s Whitney Biennial itself. Schnabel produced the second Brucennial in 2012, showing the work of more than 400 artists, including well-known figures such as Jean-Michel Basquiat, Damien Hirst, and Cindy Sherman.
Schnabel eschews a permanent gallery space; instead his curatorial practice is to match artists' work to unique, tailor-made exhibition settings. He has staged shows at traditional art galleries such as Galerie Bruno Bischofberger in Zurich, Switzerland and Contemporary Fine Arts in Berlin, Germany; in a Long Island field; and in a cloistered garden in Venice, Italy, during the Venice Biennale. Schnabel's notable exhibitions have included an ambitious show of paintings by artist Terence Koh entitled "Flowers for Baudelaire" at photographer Richard Avedon's former studio, and a show of performance artist Laurie Anderson's paintings in the West Village. When auction house Sotheby's opened a gallery space at their New York headquarters, Schnabel curated the first official show. The successful 2011 exhibition at Sotheby's S2 was entitled “These Days” and included work by Dan Colen, the Bruce High Quality Foundation, Terence Koh, and David Benjamin Sherry. In early 2013 Schnabel curated an exhibition at Acquavella Galleries, a well-established art-world institution on Manhattan's Upper East Side.
In Spring 2013 Schnabel presented an expansive group exhibition curated by David Rimanelli, an art critic who writes for Artforum. Entitled DSM-V, the show coincided with the publication of the fifth edition of the American Psychiatric Association's Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders. It featured work by artists from the mid twentieth century to the present day, including Picasso and Warhol, Piero Manzoni and Daniel Buren, alongside Cecily Brown, Bjarne Melgaard, and George Condo, as well as newcomers Borna Sammak and Jesse Edwards. The exhibition took place in the historic Farley Post Office building, a New York City landmark. Designed by Stanford White and built in 1912, it occupies two full city blocks behind Madison Square Garden and is the site of the future Daniel Patrick Moynihan Station, an addition to Pennsylvania Station. Artists with work in the show also included Jean-Michel Basquiat, Nancy Barton, Stefan Bondell, Carol Bove, Joe Bradley, the Bruce High Quality Foundation, Francesco Clemente, Dan Colen, Ron Gorchov, Mark Grotjahn, Alex Israel, Sergej Jensen, Rashid Johnson, Terence Koh, Harmony Korine, Sean Landers, Hanna Liden, Nate Lowman, McDermott & McGough, Adam McEwen, Theo Rosenblum, David Salle, Julian Schnabel, Josh Smith, Dash Snow, Betty Tompkins, and Oscar Tuazon.
- Orden, Erica. "Vito Schnabel Cultivates a Community. The New York Sun, April 30, 2008.
- Cotter, Holland. "Who Needs the Whitney?" The New York Times, February 25, 2010.
- Johnson, Ken. "Brucennial 2012." The New York Times, March 1, 2012.
- Miller, Michael. "La Dolce Vito." GalleristNY, November 1, 2011.
- DeLooz, Pierre Alexandre. "Asked and Answered." The New York Times, June 21, 2010.
- Adams, Susan. "Thirty Under Thirty." Forbes, December 17, 2012.
- Orden, Erica. "Stateside Sarko Takes Edgy Art Home." New York, November 9, 2008.
- "First Exhibition of Laurie Anderson's Paintings in New York," ArtDaily, May 14, 2012.
- Vogel, Carol. "Sotheby's as a Gallery." The New York Times, October 20, 2011.
- Christiansen, Lauren. "Vito Schnabel and ... His New Exhibition 'White Collar Crimes.' Vanity Fair Daily, February 22, 2012.
- Linda Yablonsky, Artforum, "Keeping It Real," May 16, 2013.
- Michael H. Miller, GalleristNY, "Art Goes Postal," May 9, 2013.