Rental Gallery is proud to announce its new location at 87 Newtown Road in East Hampton, New York. Owned and directed by artist-dealer Joel Mesler, the nomadic and collaborative Rental has existed in earlier iterations in Los Angeles (2004-2007) and New York City (2007-2010). The inaugural show will be a Rental retrospective, gathering artists who have shown in the space over the years. It will open in May 2017. Rental will remain open throughout the year, presenting longer-run exhibitions, often of an experimental character, supplemented by a robust, monthly exhibition calendar during the summer season.
The move to the Hamptons responds to systemic shifts in the art market. A decade of rising rents in art centers, combined with a global move towards an art fair-driven calendar, has left brick-and-mortar galleries in a state of crisis. Moving away from the city, especially to a seasonal destination such as the Hamptons, has emerged as a logical choice for a mid-tier gallery like Rental. “New York has been the center of the art world for the longest time,” says Mesler, “but in a globalized world, what does that even mean? We’re focusing on one of most important regions of artmaking and collecting in this part of the world, figuring that people will come to us. It’s like those bumper stickers—Think Global, Collect Local.”
Rental Gallery began in 2004 in Los Angeles as a way to bridge the New York and West Coast art communities, as well as to provide a venue for flexible and experimental programming, both by local curators and gallerists, and those from out of town. Past exhibition partners include Raster Gallery (Warsaw, Poland), Christian Nagel (Cologne, Germany), and Patricia Low (Gstaad, Switzerland). Exhibited artists include Robert Longo and his studio assistants, R.H. Quaytman, Rob Pruitt, Daren Bader, and Elizabeth Neel. In keeping with this spirit, Rental will continue to collaborate with galleries and curators from around the world. Rental will deal in both the primary and secondary markets.
Rental East Hampton also represents a continual collaboration between Joel Mesler and Cultural Counsel, as Adam Abdalla, President of the firm, is both an investor in and marketing partner of the space. The two previously collaborated with Sotheby’s S2 for Fish People, a critically lauded exhibition of Mesler’s paintings at the Surf Lodge in Montauk last summer.