Art in General
145 Plymouth Street,
|Type||Nonprofit arts organization|
|Website||Art in General|
Art in General is a non-profit contemporary art exhibition space in New York City. Founded in 1981 by artists Martin Weinstein and Teresa Liszka in the General Hardware building—hence "Art in General.", Art in General’s mission is to assist artists with the production and presentation of new work, changing in response to artists’ needs and informing and engaging the public about their work. Laurel Ptak currently serves as the organization's Executive Director.
Since its first exhibition in 1981, Art in General has provided a space for artists to display unconventional work and exchange ideas with their peers for almost 40 years, making it one of the longest-standing non-profit artist organizations in New York City.  Art in General organizes and presents exhibitions, commissions new art projects, hosts national and international artist residency programs, and facilitates regular free public programs with renowned critics and curators. Currently, more than 3,000 artists have exhibited their work at Art in General in a wide range of disciplines—painting, sculpture, drawing, photography, installation art, audio, video art, performance art and new media art.
The New Commissions Program, currently Art in General’s central focus, has flourished since its launch in 2005. The program was created in response to artists’ need for support to create major new projects that would significantly advance their practice. Art in General commissions new works from six to eight artists each year, either through an open call, or through direct invitation. Art in General provides commissioned artists with both space and a budget for developing their project, as well as an honorarium. Initially designed for New York based artists, in 2012 this program expanded to include projects by international artists.
Art in General established the Eastern European Residency Exchange (EERE) in 2001, with the goal of supporting critical dialogue, the presentation of new work, and a greater understanding of diverse cultures. This program took the form of a two-way artist residency until 2013, when it expanded to encompass residencies, institutional co-commissioning and other forms of exchange. Art in General’s partner institutions have included: 'kim?' Contemporary Art Centre in Riga, Latvia; The Gardens in Vilnius, Lithuania; Pavilion Unicredit in Bucharest, Romania; Croatian Association of Artists (HDLU) in Zagreb, Croatia; The Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art in Rijeka, Croatia; The Foundation Center for Contemporary Arts in Prague, Czech Republic; The Trafó House of Contemporary Arts in Budapest, Hungary; Bunkier Sztuki Gallery in Kraków, Poland; and The Centre for Contemporary Art in Warsaw, Poland.
Art in General regularly organizes other programs and exhibitions. The Audio in the Elevator program began in 1990 in response to the slow-moving elevator that takes 38 seconds to reach the 6th floor gallery from street level. Art in General saw this unfavorable circumstance as an opportunity to create a new exhibition space in the elevator, where one to five audio or video art projects were displayed each year. Since moving to an adjacent space, this program became known as the Museé Minuscule, a name adopted with permission from the former New Langton Arts, San Francisco.
As Art in General presented mostly group exhibitions in its first twenty years of operation. The full list of artists who have exhibited numbers in the thousands, among them: Polly Apfelbaum, Carlos Garaicoa, Gabriel Orozco, Byron Kim, Glenn Ligon, Josiah McElheny, Paul Pfeiffer, Dorothea Rockburne, Rirkrit Tiravanija, Cecilia Vicuña, Marina Abramović, Sharon Hayes, Sara Magenheimer, Andrea Geyer, Klara Lidén, Dineo Seshee Bopape, and many more.
- "Latino Survey: Art in General". MoMA.
- Buffenstein, Alyssa. ""Art in General Names Laurel Ptak Executive Director"". Artnet. Retrieved 26 March 2017.
- Buffenstein, Alyssa (Feb 10, 2017). "Art in General Names Laurel Ptak Executive Director". Artnet news. Retrieved Jan 24, 2018.
- "Art in General Leaving SoHo Space - artnet News". artnet News. 2015-04-13. Retrieved 2018-01-24.