Published April 13, 2020
Socially Distant Studio Visit #7 with artist Stacey Robinson in conversation with Hallwalls' curator John Massier.
Hallwalls remains an ever present voice in the Buffalo art scene. Even in a period of Social Distancing Hallwall's Visual Arts Curator John Massier has found a way to keep the feeling of community together. Massier has been interviewing artist remotely in and from Buffalo for a couple of weeks now and placing them online. You can check out this one and many other of great videos collected by Hallwalls on youtube right now.
Hallwalls was established by Charles Clough, Robert Longo, Diane Bertolo, Nancy Dwyer, Larry Lundy, Cindy Sherman and Michael Zwack in 1974 in a converted ice packing warehouse, the Essex Art Center, which had been converted into studios for artists. The focus of Hallwalls since its inception has been to produce a space that will accommodate artists from diverse backgrounds. Works from varying mediums, which include film, video, performance art, music, painting, photography, and sculpture, have come together since the beginning, to confront the prevailing social issues of contemporary culture.
In the 1980s, Hallwalls moved to 700 Main Street. During this time, the curators found it increasingly difficult to counterbalance the initial intentions of the founders, which were to create a space where artists could freely show works that were not creations sponsored or funded by corporate interests, and grow as an arts institution that could serve the largest possible audience. Funding increases allowed for a larger gallery space in the 700 Main Street complex, as well as opportunities for more artists to show their work in the gallery, but required the input and compensation of more staff and organizers.
Funding has been a consistent issue, but Hallwalls has been able to survive. Despite severe cuts in the 1990s, Hallwalls has remained a strong presence in the Western New York community. In January 2006, Hallwalls moved into its new home, which it shares with Righteous Babe Records, at 341 Delaware Ave., in a former Asbury Methodist Church, purchased by Ani DiFranco.
A catalog of some of the films shown at Hallwalls are archived at The Poetry Collection at the University at Buffalo.
Some of the performers who have performed at Hallwalls include: Kathy Acker, Glenn Branca, Fifth Column, The Kipper Kids, Ann Magnuson, Christian Marclay, Harvey Pekar, Richard Serra and Karen Finley.
(sourced from wikipedia)