This year continues to be significant for Guild Hall, as it celebrates its 90th Anniversary and its 83rd Artist Members Exhibition.
The first Artist Members Exhibition took place in 1938, shortly after Guild Hall’s opening in 1931. The exhibition is the oldest non-juried show on Long Island and one of the few non-juried exhibitions still running. Deeply rooted in the history of the East End artist colony, early participants included Jackson Pollock, Lee Krasner, Alfonso Ossorio, Perle Fine, Bill King, James Brooks, Charlotte Park, John Little and many more, showing their support of Guild Hall and its role as their community museum, theater and education center.
Due to the popularity of this Members Exhibition, more than 400 artists participate each year. The Artist Members Exhibition attracts remarkable art world professionals as awards jurors who select winners in the categories of Top Honors, Best Abstract, Best Representational, Best Photograph, Best Work on Paper, Best Sculpture, Best Mixed Media, Catherine and Theo Hios Best Landscape Award, Best New Artist and various Honorable Mentions. The Top Honors winner is also awarded a solo exhibition in the Museum at a later date.
This year’s awards juror is Antwaun Sargent, who is the director and curator at the Gagosian Gallery in Manhattan.
“In addition to the exciting participation of Antwaun Sargent and the 450+ entries, it might be of interest to note that not even a pandemic would stop us from continuing this tradition for the 83rd year,” says Digital Marketing Associate Samantha Young. “Christina Mossaides Strassfield and Casey Dalene set up a very impressive COVID-friendly drop-off procedure this year. Normally there are a couple days of drop-offs where people come whenever they want during a set window, but this year they were required to schedule their drop off and don’t even have to get out of the car. One passerby actually asked if it was a COVID vaccine distribution site! It’s very impressive.”
Like 2020’s show, the works will be available for purchase on Shopify.
“And Joe Brondo will be setting up a Matterport tour so you can visit the galleries virtually,” explains Young. “In the least, the pandemic has forced us all to think outside the box and we have actually incorporated practices that we will continue even when we don’t have to worry about the dangers of gathering!”
Guild Hall’s 83rd Artist Members Exhibition runs from March 6–April 10 at Guild Hall, 158 Main Street, East Hampton. For more information, visit guildhall.org.