downtownexpress.com
Volume 19 Issue 42 | March 2 - 8, 2007

Arts group opens in the Seaport

With a temporary space and an ambitious mission statement, a group of Seaport artists is hoping to create a permanent cultural association for the historic neighborhood.

The newly minted Seaport District Cultural Association, founded by PhotoGraphic Gallery co-directors James Wintner and Richard Sack, has been granted use of the empty storefront at the corner of Beekman and Front Sts. The association plans to use the space to display the work of local artists and host public performances, with the goal of eventually finding a permanent locale.

Beyond supporting local artists of all stripes, the association’s mission statement calls for working with local businesses to promote development that is respectful of the district’s history and beneficial to its residents. Wintner said developers Sciame and Zuberry, as well as several local merchants, have contributed funds to get the group started.

In addition to the money, the association has received free legal counsel from local attorney Marcy J. Gordon. General Growth is loaning the group the Beekman St. space for free until the end of April. Currently, the space is hosting an exhibit of local photography. On Mar. 10, the association will host an opening reception to spread the word about the new cultural nonprofit. Later in April, Wintner hopes to organize a “Taste of the Seaport” benefit. He has also solicited the help of Shooting Star Theater to plan performances at the space.

If the events are successful, Wintner hopes that the association will be able to extend its stay on Beekman St., at least for a little while. “In the best case scenario, everyone likes us there and we can stay there longer,” he said.

—Skye H. McFarlane

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