Group show by three Highlands artists ends five-year run
By Alison Rooney
On Sunday, Sept. 24, Barbara Galazzo, owner of Gallery 66 NY in Cold Spring, will remove the paintings from its walls and shut its red doors after five years on Main Street.
When it closes, only one gallery, Buster Levi at 121 Main St., will remain in operation in Cold Spring.
Galazzo, who lives over the gallery, said she knew several years ago that the building’s owner wanted to sign a long-term lease when hers expired, or sell. A cooperative whose members come and go, the gallery couldn’t commit, particularly as the past two years have seen a downturn in business. Another tenant, yet to be publicly identified, will take over the three rooms and back garden on Oct. 1.
The large layout of the gallery allowed Galazzo to present works by three artists at a time in each exhibit, with the works often linked by a theme. The final show, Past, Present, Future, which opens with a reception from 6 to 9 p.m. on Friday, Sept. 1, has paintings and collages by Anna Bergin of Beacon, Galelyn Williams of Cold Spring and Lisa Zukowski of Beacon.
Over the years, Galazzo kept a careful tally of the foot traffic at the gallery, which sometimes topped 180 people in a day. However, many were hikers who browsed but typically were not looking to buy art. About 50 percent of the people who purchase artwork have a connection to the artist, she said. The other half fall in love on the spot. Very few works of art are purchased as investments.
“Most people buy from emotions,” says Galazzo, who before opening in Cold Spring owned a New York City gallery for 16 years.
Galazzo and other merchants and gallery owners attempted to build a First Friday tradition that mirrors Second Saturday in Beacon. “Everyone was really excited about this, but it’s never had the participation that Beacon has,” Galazzo says. “Still, there are First Friday regulars, including Beacon residents.”
Galazzo, a prominent glass artist, says she plans to put everything in the gallery in storage and take a breather. She’s done work for the Rockland Center for the Arts in West Nyack and also as an art handler for a TV series, which involves hanging, taking down and caring for art on the set.
“Running a gallery is a lot like opening a new store every month,” Galazzo says. “There’s the putting up and taking down, the marketing, organizing the opening reception. And then you do it all again just a few weeks later.” Galazzo says she looks forward to spending more time in her own studio, and, though living above the gallery has been convenient, she admits there are moments when “it’s Saturday morning and you just want to come downstairs in your grungy sweats — and you can’t.”
Gallery 66 NYC is located at 66 Main St. Its hours are noon to 6 p.m. Friday through Sunday, or by appointment. Call 845-809-5838.