The news of the horrific earthquake and tsunami that devastated parts of Japan, leaving chaos in their wake, reverberated around the world. It certainly was felt in Chelsea, the art district of New York City, where Agora Gallery is located.
At the time of the terrible events in Japan, one of the exhibitions in Agora Gallery’s main exhibition space was ‘Matrix of the Mind: Contemporary Fine Art by Japanese Artists. In fact, some of these artists had visited New York for the opening reception of this show, of which their work was a part. They returned home only shortly before the disaster occurred.
Agora Gallery is one of the many contemporary art galleries to be found in Chelsea, which is a thriving gallery district. Yet Agora Gallery has always been proud of exhibiting the work of artists from around the world, recognizing talent as more important than country or geographical location, although accepting that location may have its impact on the art. This international element also ensures the gallery’s awareness of its place in the world as a whole, and its connection to everything that happens.
When the staff at Agora Gallery heard of the disaster, they first assured themselves that the artists they had been in contact with so recently about the exciting details of their fine art exhibition were safe and unhurt by the frightening scenes which could be seen on television and online. That done, their thoughts turned to what they could do to help.
After consultation with the artists, it seemed appropriate to dedicate 25% of the proceeds from the sale of the artwork from Matrix of the Mind to disaster relief, and a special web page was set up for this purpose. In this way, the power of art could bring practical relief to those who desperately needed it.