303 Gallery

303 Gallery - Lisa Spellman. 

OXO

X - for falsely claiming to own copyright on work by gallery artists, and laughable attempts at intimidation.

"hello mark - this is simon at 303 gallery. i noticed you had an image of Maureen Gallace's work up on your flickr page - please be aware that 303 Gallery owns the copyright to the work and all public display of images, including web content. if you could kindly remove this image from your page, it would be most appreciated. - best, simon"

snap. No PHOTOGRAPHY!

Send your paparazzi shots of Lisa Spellman, Mari Spirito, or Simon Greenberg to ratfinkcanary@gmail.com.

70 comments:

Anonymous said...

haha

Anonymous said...

I have never heard a gallery be such assholes to people who are trying to HELP them and their artists out by promoting for them.

Anonymous said...

303 is the single-most loathed gallery among collectors i can think of. as a longtime collector i can think of no one in the art world more rude or self-deluded than the owner and directors of this gallery.

Anonymous said...

I'm not a serious collector but was looking to buy a small piece and came in to talk to Mari Spirito and she was extremely friendly and attentive, not rude in the least - we had a nice chat. The photo I was interested in was sold out so didn't I purchase anything, but she gave me the names of other dealers that had lithographs by a couple artists I was interested in. It did take a really long time for her to get in touch with me after I called a left a message with an assistant, but rude or self-deluded was certainly not anything I experienced from anyone there.

Anonymous said...

"Most loathed"? You are ridiculously misinformed.

I am a collector. I have purchased 5 pieces from this gallery over the past 10 years and 303 is one of the MOST PLEASANT galleries I have ever worked with. Lisa is incredibly professional and knowledgeable. Mari is smart, friendly and courteous and makes me feel very welcome when I walk in announced or unannounced.

direct said...

Too bad most of their artists are so weak.

Anonymous said...

303 Gallery personifies the decay of the values of galleries. That gallery was designed to be on Sex & the city. the vapid gallerinas there may be kind and cute but their policies are a mere reflection of the worst qualities of the dollar driven art world (sorry, art market). If it's not glitz or trend it's not there, like the artists who have left there. (Sue Williams, Andreas Gursky, Thomas Ruff,etc.) Prada doesn't allow photos either.
The reason for the opposing views expressed are obvious. Primary employee training is in the recognition of the odor of money and the marketing of the commodity, not the substance of the work. One was recently fired when he/she didn't recognize Mark Jacobs when he came in the gallery and was dressed 'like a homeless person' and threw him out.

Anonymous said...

I have also heard that 303 is in financial trouble and may not last long. Source was a collector v. close to the gallery. But I can't say I've ever been treated well enough there to care if it's true. Zwirner and Gagosian and Iwan Wirth (when he opens here) will sop up all the good artists.

Anonymous said...

"If it's not glitz or trend it's not there, like the artists who have left there"

This statement is just silly. How can you define a roster with artists like Stephen Shore, Hans Peter Feldman and Kristen Oppenheim as "glitz" or "trend"?

Do your research and you will see that Lisa's relationships with her artists are well-nurtured and long-lasting.

If the gallery was "having financial trouble" would they have been able to purchase and renovate an adjunct space three months ago? I think not.

Anonymous said...

You're right, I didn't do any research other than seeing what they actually show not merely who is on the "roster". I don't recall seeing shows by Steven Shore, Hans Peter Feldman, or Christen Oppenheim there in years, although I could be wrong but I still won't be doing the research.
I'm sure her relationships with her artists are all unicorns and rainbows, and I too was surprised by the comment about the financial state of the gallery since I heard that she has a substantial trust fund.

Anonymous said...

If they opened the adjunct space three months ago that means they probably bought it a year ago or more when the real estate market and art market were peaking. That was a very different world. Unfortunate timing. Maybe there's some bad karma over there or something.

Buck Naked said...

Hans Peter Feldman:
June, 2009
November-January, 2005
July/August, 2000

Kristin Oppenheim:
January/February, 2002
February/March, 2000

Stephen Shore:
May-July, 2006
September/October, 2003

Anonymous said...

I have worked with 303 extensively, particularly with Lisa, Mari and Simone. Each one of them is incredibly professional and well-adjusted. They communicate clearly, pay on a timely basis and put their extensive global contacts (collectors and curators) to work for their artists.

Whether some anonymous poster here doesn't share the same vision as the gallery shouldn't matter. What does matter is that this gallery is fantastic to work with. Isn't THAT what this Blog is about?

Anonymous said...

Never have I been so rudely treated than at 303 Gallery. They didn't know who I was and therefore I didn't exist. Bad karma indeed.

Buck Naked said...

Address: 547 West 21 Street 10011
Building Class: K1
Residential Units: 0
Commercial Units: 1
Total Units: 1
Land Square Feet: 4,938
Gross Square Feet: 4,587
Year Built: 1960
Tax Class: 4
Sale Price: $7,400,000
Sale Date: 7/17/2007

imraranzz said...

To the anonymous commenter who wrote:

"Never have I been so rudely treated than at 303 Gallery. They didn't know who I was and therefore I didn't exist. Bad karma indeed."

Please elaborate. Remember, we should all be posting firsthand experiences only. Not commentary on the artists they show.

Anonymous said...

"Never have I been so rudely treated than at 303 Gallery. They didn't know who I was and therefore I didn't exist. Bad karma indeed."

clearly there are SO many people out there (and on this blog) who are under the delusion that they are hugely important and of some extraordinary, divine consequence and need the world to recognize and bow before their regal majesty! Good lord, get over yourselves.

News flash: if people treat you like an asshole, then you probably ARE an asshole.

I have an idea, try actually being POLITE to people and then see how they treat you!

Anonymous said...

Thanks Buck. ok, so the 3 artists on the "roster" that were cited as keeping 303 off the glitz, trend list:

Stephen Shore- Had a summer show in 2006, doesn't really count, does it?

Kristen Oppenheim- Hasn't had a show since 2002 and is probably embarrassed to go near the place for fear of tarnishing the family name.

Hans Peter Feldman- Had a show in 2005. I'm sure he's just thrilled about his upcoming summer show in 2009.


Each of the defender's posts further prove my point. Had you said "one time I went in there and a work that was on the wall changed my life" I may have felt I was wrong, but no one is saying that. You are all talking about your shopping experience. I don't doubt that the power sales team of Lisa, Mari, and Simone have brought their "extensive global contacts" and highly refined sales skills to bear in the marketing of their commodities. That's my point. The power is no longer in the work, but in it's ability to feed the machine. The monster machine has grown and it has to be fed. The work is designed to sell. Period. If it doesn't, well maybe we can give you a summer show.

Don't get me wrong, I don't know these people and I have nothing against them, my comments are about galleries in general and the contribution galleries like this one have made to the overall decay and the incorporation of art into the world of financial speculation.
(P.S.-good to know that they are "well-adjusted". Thanks for sharing.)

Anonymous said...

I agree, why is it that every time Doug Aitken has a show it seems like the carnival is back in town. What could be more shamelessly embarrassing than those three giant billboards (ironically facing Wall street)? I thought I was at a video technology convention watching a Geico commercial. And in the other gallery, he wants us to know that he can paint too! But the installation is all about the installation. Awesome presentation, dude! Just don't look too closely at the paintings while you're not photographing them. The 'fuck you' has been done and over-done starting about twenty or thirty years ago by a zillion bad artists. That's a hot list to be on. Maybe it's all coming to an end.

imraranzz said...

You posters are missing the point, this blog doesn't exist for you to express your opinions about a gallery's program, a fact that is clearly stated several times over on this blog.

The point of this blog is to discuss how the dealers/curators operate on a business level: do they pay on time? are they open to their artists' ideas? do they maintain good client contact? can they be held to their word?

Your anonymous opinions about their program are worthless here if your name isn't also here to back it up. Lisa Spellman and Mari Spirito's names are on everything they do and should be proud of their prowess and selections.

Buck Naked said...

Imraranzz is right. Too many opinions and not enough facts and first-hand accounts.

I'm suspending commenting on this gallery. Check back at a later date.

Colin's Ghost said...

"News flash: if people treat you like an asshole, then you probably ARE an asshole. "

That's funny, and true.

This is a fine gallery. Mary Heilmann is one of the most universally ADORED artists in New York. She would not work with bad people.

(BN take down that photo, it's in really poor taste)

direct said...

"really bad taste" is posting as Collin's Ghost. The photo reveals the truth.

Anonymous said...

I just love when you have a problem with a discussion you say "I'm suspending commenting on this gallery. Check back at a later date" and then you have the nerve to go all out paparazzo with a posted photo which has absolutely nothing to do with how anyone is "dealing".

"Anonymous" to get in...

Richard Schwamb to get out.

Anonymous said...

Please take down that photo of Lisa. It has nothing to do with the relevancy of art today.

Buck Naked said...

I posted the paparazzi photo because she does not allow photography in the gallery, and sends e-mails threatening people who want to share photographs of the art.

If she would change that policy I'd remove the photo.

direct said...

I worked for her for over a year and I can tell you that's how she operates, by the power of the threat She's the greediest person I ever met.

Anonymous said...

As a collector who was once threatened by her for something that was totally legal and legitimate I empathize w last commenter. Very unpleasant experience and, in my opinion, these are very bad people posing as somehow "authentic" and "protective" of their artists. Would never deal with them again. I feel the photograph of Lisa captures the essence of the gallery--it conveys extremely misplaced arrogance.

watch your step said...

I have been reluctant to post a comment here but after reading what people are saying I decided dissent plays an important role in our sacred little art world. I work for one of the major New York museums. The museum presented a project with this gallery. The curators were unanimously against the relevance of this show but the decision by the higher-ups to proceed had more to do with the then recent publicity "The Gates" piece had received than what the curators recommended. As per museum policy, the show was not subsidized by us but it seemed there were endless amounts of money being thrown at it. Now, 2 years later, the show and it's monumental budget have become a standing joke around the museum and probably outside as well. I think the allure of supporting what is bedazzling or cool will hold a lot less sway after the shake-down of the crash. I don't know how accurate the reports are about the personalities of those who work at the gallery but we have heard about some really awful things the owner has done in her personal life which are in keeping with the negative opinions some of the people have expressed on your blog.

Anonymous said...

Im amazed at the amount of comments directed at this woman and her gallery, compared to the big dogs galleries. Lisa has never poached an artist, never built a program on just hyped artists that came to her after being made by other galleries. The majority of her artists have never shown at another NY gallery. There are multiple cases of 20 year relationships with her artists. Her staff are allowed to talk to each other, allowed to go to the bathroom, allowed to have relationships with the artists. She always pays her artists. And all this started because the gallery asked a website to take down a photo? and that is a bad thing? arent galleries there to protect the artists work? Who decides which is a good website and therefor should be allowed to feature the work? The gallery doesnt make that distinction. They simply ask people to ask permission. They cant enforce it, but at least they can stand up for their artists and say " Please remove the image". We all do the best we can and the idea that protecting an artists imagry is cause for this destructive series of posts is really regrettable. No one is perfect and dealing would seem to be an odd job where a bunch of collectors barnstorm you when you have the hot thing they want and then ignore you when you show something they cant understand and don't see on their rich friends walls. Lisa Spellman has consistantly supported women artists and a women run staff. She wore a Dump Bush tee shirt to work. She works in a world full of insecure people. Everyone is hungry and needy in this artworld of ours. And while I think she looks just fine in that bathing suit picture, it really lowers this endeavor to post that kind of shot of someone who is a professional. And again, the idea that she is should be punished for telling a blogger to take a photo off their site, for which they have not gained permission to use, is crazy. Especially when half your purpose seems to be telling artists artists which galleries they can trust. So, now, you are penalizing a gallery who is just trying to protect their artists work. What if a pornographic site would use an image of Lisa Yuskavage? What if KKK site would use a painting from John Currin? And who decides when its ok?

Anonymous said...

303 is acting like a porn site protecting there jpg center folds...its silly. If I want to down load an image off a site I should be able to do so.Let me put it into my image spank bank.Its not like Im going to make a postcard and sell it in front of the gallery (thats another artist) If the devil is in the detail then they are being short sighted with what "protection" means to them. That being said showing a bad photo of MS isnt productive and is just draging the dialog into the dirt. Truce out dudes.

Anonymous said...

Dear amazed,

You said:

"a bunch of collectors barnstorm you when you have the hot thing they want and then ignore you when you show something they cant understand and don't see on their rich friends walls."

I am a long time collector and I find it very offensive to be lumped in with any "bunch". I don't barnstorm, I don't ignore, and I think I understand quite a bit. The puny mindedness that appears to be surrounding this gallery and it's supporters could not be more evident than in your prejudicial comment about "rich" people. The implication that wealth is automatically accompanied by ignorance or stupidity has worn way thin. Is this your idea of enlightened thinking? And the public relies on you to be the purveyors to the world of the most highly refined efforts of the human mind? It would appear the gallery or it's inner circle (you, obviously) have now succeeded in offending just about everyone. The fact that she lets her employees use the toilet etc. hardly speaks to all the questionable things she appears to have done. From bullying innocent bloggers to throwing Marc Jacobs out for what he was wearing for God's sake! She says "dump Bush". She is Bush. And you're Cheney. That's what you "can't understand".

TONAL said...

I read the posts on Lisa and 303 Gallery and wanted to post my own experience. I'm not a friend of Lisa's, nor do I go to their openings regularly. I prefer to do my dealings with galleries quietly, without a lot of people around.

I bought my first painting from Lisa when the gallery was in Soho 16 years ago and I have kept in touch with the gallery ever since. Lisa has NEVER been disrespectful, unpleasant, selfish, dishonest or rude. She's informative, patient and never pushes any artist or work on me. I still have many pieces I've purchased from her and I enjoy them every day and I couldn't be happier. I have recommended her gallery and the artists she represents to my friends and have never for a moment thought I was making a mistake. I can't speak for anyone else posting here - I can just tell you that my experiences with 303 Gallery are great.
I really wish I could say that about other galleries in New York.

Anonymous said...

i've only had good experiences with them... they are always very friendly and informative, and they are very passionate about the artists they represent

Anonymous said...

Ignorance is bliss.

Anonymous said...

Most galleries (like 303) are glorified stores pushing expensive products. A business is "inspired" by making money. This shit about "...very passionate about the artists they represent" is a joke. The gallery is head over heels as long as the work sells or else the honeymoon tends to be over faster than you can say "I'm
cumming" or going...

Anonymous said...

They only have one gallery listing fall shows.......maybe it's that ole' karma at work.....

Anonymous said...

Wow, nearly instant! It hasn't even been a year since their "expansion gala".

Check it:

http://nymag.com/daily/entertainment/2009/06/art_galleries_break_for_the_summer.html

Anonymous said...

Sprawling er... rambling press release:

http://www.re-title.com/exhibitions/303GALLERY.asp

Anonymous said...

I work very closely with 303 on a professional basis and I can say with the utmost confidence and truth that they operate on a foundation of dishonestly and a lack of transparency. Lisa Spellman is paranoid and, although she may be a nice person in her personal life, is as dishonest and opaque as she can get a way with in her dealings with both artists and collectors. She puts her own ego ahead of the betterment of her artists as if she wouldn't gain from her artists' advancement – I’ve even seen her block sales because her ego was bruised. This attitude trickles down to the women that work for her. I can't testify to what they or she are like as people, but as gallerists they are shady and even sometimes bitchy. In all fairness, this may be a typical style among most gallery owners, but we’re talking about Lisa Spellman here and she has a habit of lying. It does not surprise me that 303 would claim that they own the copyright to their artists work, they are either misinformed and think they do (wrongly), or are lying to make something go away, both are patterns in their professional handlings.

Anonymous said...

it seems absolutely bizarre that an anonymous blogger has had a major and immediate influence on the programing at 303. Neither Stephan Shore nor Hans Peter Feldman were scheduled for shows when posts were made here last November, now they've both had shows there. Did they bump someone to put Stephen Shore in last May and move Hans Peter Feldman to September (now) just because of a blogger ? WTF???

Anonymous said...

Thomas Demand jumped. Now at Matthew Marks.

Anonymous said...

Love these guys!:

http://hyperallergic.com/3402/art-bloggers-protest-303-whitney-biennial/

Anonymous said...

Blog a picture, 303 tries to call it copyright infringement. Mike Nelson rips off Jonah Freeman & Justin Lowe- what does 303 call that? Flattery?

Anonymous said...

@Anonymous 9:57 March 10th.

303 photo copyright drama aside, you have got to be kidding. Mike Nelson has been working in that manner for at least ten years.

Anonymous said...

With regard to the picture at the top of the page here: have you seen Lisa lately? She looks amazing. Don't know when that picture was taken, but it's out-of-date.

Whatever your feelings are on 303's photo policy, posting that picture is mean spirited and childish. A person has the right to run his or her gallery in a way they feel best benefits their artists. I do not feel your posting of that picture was in the same spirit. Why not clean up your karma and take it down?

Anonymous said...

I know Lisa Spellman and her situation VERY well and I can tell you it's gonna take a lot more than "looking amazing" to clean up THAT karma.

Anonymous said...

March 7, 145 AM please. I don't really want to attack Mike Nelson but I wasn't refering to the "manner" in which he and hundreds of other artists are working. I don't think it's necessary to list the objects and references that are a significant divergence from his previous work but are suspiciously not unlike, to put it kindly, other artists work. Anyone with eyes can see.

Anonymous said...

Actual reality can be so much more entertaining than the TV version:

http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?pid=3759347&id=174775784518

http://www.drugmoneyart.com/lookbook.html

Anonymous said...

Is she hawking tee shirts with peace signs on them? Is that for her daughter or something?

Anonymous said...

blogger amateur photography usually always sucks. it places no consideration on presentation or quality of image. if you want to use an image, ask the gallery to send you an image that they paid a professional to take.

Anonymous said...

"This is a fine gallery. Mary Heilmann is one of the most universally ADORED artists in New York. She would not work with bad people."

Yes, but Heilmann is also one of the least confrontational artists out there and she has thrived on a career based on long steady relationships (see Iwan Wirth). Just because she's stayed with 303 doesn't necessarily mean that everything people have said here abut their business dealings and professional manner isn't true - I'd expect that they probably kiss her ass. I know, from experience, that they tend to suck-up to the important people and celebrities and pay little mind to others. Climbing the social ladder is very important to the 303 brand - see Mariko Munro's man Carlos, the man about town and owner of The Smile, their big openings and events are clogged with all of his fashion/celebrity hipster contacts. Who knows, maybe those people actually buy the art, that much I don’t know. But I do know that it keeps 303 present in the social diaries and blogs.

Anonymous said...

You sound like someone with an axe to grind. I have personally done business with 303 in the past and have the receipts and invoices to prove it. They have always been professional, courteous and enthusiastic about my business.

I am not a celebrity nor an "important" person. But the nice thing about 303 is that they make me feel important. If they do the same for their employees and their artists, who cares if their brand has social aspirations?

Anonymous said...

"This is a fine gallery. Mary Heilmann is one of the most universally ADORED artists in New York. She would not work with bad people."

This statement makes no sense. "Bad people" don't go around showing their horns and carrying a pitchfork. Some of the worst people in the last few years have looked like rabbis (Bernie Madoff) and priests (the priests). It's no more likely that Mary Heilman knew about 303's behind the scenes shenanigans than it is that Steven Speilberg or Nobel Laureate Elie Wiesel knew about Madoff. That's what 'How's my Dealing' is all about, isn't it? Giving us the good and the bad? There sure seem to be some unhappy people and just because some people had a good experience purchasing artwork from 303 doesn't mean the other's feelings aren't legitimate. It doesn't seem like they had an axe to grind any more than positive posters have an interest at stake.

Anonymous said...

To the above: not everyone's feelings are legitimate. Yours are filled with conjecture and lack any specificity with regard to any wrongdoing on the part of 303 Gallery.

I think Mary Heillman is smart enough and with enough experience to choose the proper dealer. And I recently heard that Sue Williams went running BACK to 303 after her experience with Zwirner.....perhaps she learned her lesson the hard way?

Anonymous said...

"not everyone's feelings are legitimate."

YOU PEOPLE ARE DISGUSTING, PERIOD

Anonymous said...

I have to agree. Unless you can cite examples of these so-called "behind the scenes shenanigans", your comments are baseless and without merit.

You may just be a Sensitive Sally who got her feelings hurt, which doesn't make 303 a bad gallery to be represented by or buy work from.

Anonymous said...

when I worked there, there was this person from Texas, I think his name was Jim Lewis, who Spellman tried to screw. I think he had been a friend of her's and Richard Prince from back in the days when they were married. He wanted her to sell a Richard Prince piece he had because he desperate for money. She quoted him value (which I think was much less than it's actual value) then tried to give him much less after she had the piece. He had to threaten legal action. There were more but this was the most upsetting because he was so powerless against her.

Anonymous said...

No one likes a reseller.

Anonymous said...

this blog is ridiculous anad
completely immature. i have worked closely with this gallery, and do not personally like the charracter of ms. spellman. her false sense of "cool" is quite a turn off. HOWEVER, I do not think a picture of her in a bathing suit changes her relations in business. you should take it down.

Anonymous said...

Seems to have become largely ignored since moving off 22nd street.

Anonymous said...

If by "largely ignored" you mean having one of their artists win the Hugo Boss Prize, and Jerry Saltz and almost every other major critic gush over your Karen Kilimnick exhibition, then yes...303 has been largely ignored" since their move.

Hahahahaha!

Anonymous said...

Look at how the NYTimes is ignoring a 303 Gallery artist:

http://tmagazine.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/05/24/artifacts-greenbacks-at-the-guggenheim/

Anonymous said...

Magnificent Image

Ben Pentreath said...

Gee, Lisa really intimidates some of you wee-dicked boys!

MATTHEW ROSE said...

I just spent two weeks in NYC and as an artist I was quite impressed with seemed like a "perestroika" from the gallerinas and dealers. Maybe because I'm in Paris and no one looks up, says hello or pays you much mind here, I was struck by a change in NYC. Several years ago the interns and worker bees at their stations never looked up, responded to any question with a very short and uninterested monosyllable and appeared to regard you as an intrusion on their MS XCEL work. I wasn't exactly greeted but welcomed. Could be the economics, but maybe a memo went round. I didn't notice that 303 was particularly rude this run. Methinks that any gallery in NYC is quite happy that anyone stopped in to see what is happening on their walls and floors. And perhaps no one knows who's a millionaire, who's a pauper and who's an artist. Perhaps the net has helped democratize sentiment and experience.

Anonymous said...

303 just signed Jacob Kassay. HUGE news.

Anonymous said...

not really that huge. one trick artist joins a gallery no one cares about. considering 303's unwillingness or inability to support an artist at auction - kassay is screwed. his market was shaky before, now it's going to level off at a third of it's peak- and if he doesn't come up with some follow up to his shiny paintings that collectors can clamor for - he'll be a cautionary tale for art students in the future.

Anonymous said...

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2013-02-07/chelsea-gallery-sells-building-for-8-mln-signs-kassay.html

Anonymous said...

Elad Lassry just joined 303 Gallery.