BMW Art Guide by Independent Collectors

Where to Go Next?

The fragmentation of Manhattan’s gallery scene

New York belongs to those cities that are in constant motion and subject to reinvention. Things come together as quickly as they fall apart. This of course also applies to the city’s vibrant art and gallery scene, especially in the concrete jungle of Manhattan. In a recent article published by the art newspaper, the scattering of Manhattan’s gallery landscape is analyzed more in depth. It is shown that the scene is momentarily experiencing an extensive change, not only due to the property boom but also due to generation issues and space problems.

Since the mid 1990s the district of Chelsea, which used to be dominated by lots and garages, became a premium address for galleries. Established names such as Paula Cooper, Larry Gagosian or David Zwirner have their spaces here. But others had to leave Chelsea due to rocketing property prices. Especially with the announcement of the construction of the High Line Park in 2006, Chelsea officially became the developers’ dream with rents partly doubling. The question people are wondering about today is where the art caravan will settle down next. Where in Manhattan is still space for a new gallery district to emerge?

Of course there is the Lower East Side, the other premium address for galleries. Over 50 spaces are situated here and are an essential part of the district’s identity. But the dynamics in the Lower East Side speak of a different generation than the one in Chelsea. So, where to go instead? Due to the general lack of space on the island, the trend seems to be that there is none available. Some, like Emmanuel Perrotin or Dominique Lévy have migrated to the Upper East Side, others like Sean Kelly and Magda Sawon have moved their galleries to Hell’s Kitchen and Tribeca. And of course, gallerists, that bought property in Chelsea, such as Larry Gagosian or Barbara Gladstone, will presumably continue their residencies there.

And not to forget: at the other side of the East River there is the increasingly attractive Brooklyn, welcoming Manhattan gallerists with more moderate prices and space. As you can read in our New York Shorty, Luhring Augustine and Kesting Ray have already followed this invitation.

Image from Bernd Untiedt, via Wikimedia Commons, CC Licence Info

More Information on developments in Manhattan’s gallery scene

Insiders (68)


Exhibition venue with the theme ‚Living with Art‘

Wilhelmina Jewell Strong - Sparks

Founder of BiTHOUSE Projects - BAAR Art Journey


Collector behind the ARNDT Collection

Sandra Guimarães

Director of Museum of Contemporary Art Helga de Alvear

Grazyna Kulczyk

Founder of Muzeum Susch


Interview with Georgie Pope and Eleonora Sutter, Co-founders

Kamiar Maleki

Director at VOLTA

Gallery Weekend Berlin 2022

Tokini Peterside

Founder and Director, ART X Lagos


Founding Director of the Athens Biennale

Boris Ondreička

Artistic Director of viennacontemporary

Maribel Lopez

Director of ARCO

David Gryn

Founder and Director of Daata

Fondation Beyeler Audiovisual Broadcast

Fondation Beyeler and Nordstern Basel present Dixon x Transmoderna

Gary Yeh

Founder of ArtDrunk and Young Collector

WATCH: The Best of the BMW Art Guide

Where will you travel next to explore art?

Maike Cruse

2020 Gallery Weekend Berlin

Touria El Glaoui

Founding Director of 1-54 Contemporary African Art Fair

Johann König

Messe in St. Agnes

PArt - Producers Art Platform

A crisis initiative to help artists directly affected by the pandemic

Barbara Moore

CEO of Biennale of Sydney

Unique Collector’s Item

by Independent Collectors

Alix Dana

Fair Director at Independent

When Collectors are Able to Commission

by Nicole Büsing and Heiko Klaas

Juliet Kothe and Julia Rust

Initiators of Collection Night, Berlin

Marie-Anne McQuay

Curator of Wales in Venice, 58th Venice Biennale 2019

Dorothy and Herb Vogel

Two extraordinary art collectors

Heather Hubbs

Director at NADA

Every Art Collection Needs Space

by Nicole Büsing and Heiko Klaas

Collecting Art with François Pinault

Rudolf Stingel at Palazzo Grassi

A Common Ground

by Silvia Anna Barrilà

Caroline Vos

Director at Amsterdam Art Weekend

Hidden Collections

by Nicole Büsing and Heiko Klaas

Nicole Berry

Executive Director of The Armory Show

Daniel Hug

Fair Director at Art Cologne

The Role of the Art Fair

by Silvia Anna Barrilà

Peter Bläuer

Director at LISTE

A Brush Against Nature

by Nicole Büsing and Heiko Klaas

Ilaria Bonacossa

Director of Artissima

Excessiveness, the Latent Danger of Collecting Art

by Independent Collectors

Jo Stella-Sawicka

Artistic Director at Frieze

Florence Bourgeois

Director at Paris Photo

Where Artists Can Work More Playfully

by Christiane Meixner

Specifically Commissioned

by Silvia Anna Barrilà

Manuela Mozo

Executive Director of UNTITLED, ART Miami and San Francisco

Important Museums and Private Collections

by Christiane Meixner

Susanna Corchia

Director of the Barcelona Gallery Weekend

Emilia van Lynden

Artistic Director at Unseen, Amsterdam

Carlos Urroz

Director at ARCOmadrid

Shoe Smudges Streaked Across the White Walls

by Christiane Meixner

Amanda Coulson

Director at VOLTA Basel

Douwe Cramer

Director at Singapore Contemporary

Art and Architecture – Attractive Allies

by Nicole Büsing and Heiko Klaas

Jo Baring

Curator of Sculpture Series, Masterpiece London

Bidders and Buyers

by Christiane Meixner

Anne Vierstraete

Managing Director at Art Brussels

Nanna Hjortenberg

Director at CHART

The Crucial Role of the New

by Independent Collectors

Makers and Believers

On Art History’s Most Famous Patrons

The Past is Back

And collectors are buying it up

Are Artists the Better Curators?

On the diminishing boundary between professions in the art world

The Digital Museum

On the importance of the museum’s web presence

The Man in the Middle

On the curator’s private and public engagements

A Private Matter?

On the importance of physical space for the value of art

Off the Wall

How museums contribute to the worth of artworks

To Buy or Not to Buy

Collectors on their experiences of letting an artwork slip away

How to Pass On a Passion

On long-term challenges for new private museums