David Zwirner launches online viewing room for small galleries

·2 min read
Lisa Alvarado, 'Traditional object (Thalweg)' (2020)

As galleries have been forced to close their doors in reaction to the global COVID-19 pandemic, artists and dealers are recalibrating their business strategies to expand digital offerings.

While art businesses are rushing to expand their online presence, David Zwirner has announced that it will invite 12 independent New York-based galleries to use its online viewing room.

Among them are 47 Canal, Bridget Donahue, Bureau, Company, David Lewis, Elijah Wheat Showroom, Essex Street, James Fuentes, JTT and Queer Thoughts -- many of which have seen their spring shows canceled in the wake of the coronavirus outbreak.

The initiative, dubbed "Platform: New York," will allow participating galleries to put forth two works by a single artist that they are currently representing.

Bridget Donahue gallery will present the work of Chicago-based artist and harmonium player Lisa Alvarado, whose practice engages with abstraction beyond the parameters of Western art history.

Meanwhile, Magenta Plains gallery will showcase new large-scale paintings by Nathaniel Robinson, who often uses geometric forms to suggest urban or natural landscapes and environments.

All inquiries and sales for "Platform: New York" will be directly managed by the individual galleries. David Zwirner is not charging anything for their participation, nor is it taking commission on sales.

Although "Platform: New York" is running from April 3 through May 1, the mega-gallery confirmed that the initiative will continue with a London edition.

Details about this new iteration will be announced at a yet-unknown date in April.

David Zwirner Online has experienced a boom in recent weeks, with Artnet News reporting traffic had increased more than 500% since its physical galleries closed earlier this March.

In a similar move, institutions across the world are revamping their online offerings to accommodate audiences stuck at home.

Art Basel has launched new online "viewing rooms" in lieu of its Hong Kong fair, while the 22nd edition of the Biennale of Sydney moved online thanks to a partnership with Google Arts & Culture platform.

The virtual edition of the Biennale includes digital versions of its exhibitions and programs, along with virtual walk-throughs, podcasts, curated tours, and artist takeovers.