Dupont Circle is not the nerve center of the gallery world it once was. But one gallery in the neighborhood still pulls in crowds. In an alley behind the Phillips Collection, Hillyer Art Space packs its poetry readings, film screenings and a lively program of visual art exhibitions, often accompanied by live music, with a young crowd.
"We wanted to provide something that was not what we were seeing in D.C. when we opened here four years ago," says David Furchgott. He's president of International Art and Artists, a 15-year-old organization that puts together traveling art shows around the world. Hillyer is the local face of IA&A's global outreach program - and one fast becoming known as a showcase for underexposed D.C. artists.
Its reputation for embracing both young artists and young audiences has spread. Now if only it can make a dent with some of its, er, stodgier neighbors, Furchgott will be happy. "I just wish that some of our friends from the Cosmos Club would come by sometime," he says.
Good neighbor: Marsha Mateyka Gallery. Work by Jim Sanborn, Anish Kapoor and Gene Davis is on view through Saturday.
-- Michael O'Sullivan (Jan. 14, 2011)