7 Questions for Gallerist Maxine Henry on How to Cultivate Self-Acceptance, One Artwork at a Time

The founder of Selfless Art discusses staying true to the gallery's positive mission and message.

Moopsi, Untitled (2023). Courtesy of Selfless Art.

Established in 2022 by Maxine Henry in New York City, Selfless Art platforms a diverse range of contemporary art to offer transformative experiences for viewers and collectors. Driven by ideas of self-reflection, mindfulness, and mental health, the art and exhibitions presented are intended to evoke personal contemplation. Meanwhile, the gallery’s online viewing room features programming that delves deeper into these themes of psychological freedom and expression.

We recently caught up with Henry to find out more about what inspired the founding of Selfless Art, and the mission of the gallery moving forward.

Can you talk a bit about your background, and what led you to establish Selfless Art?

My educational background includes a B.B.A. in marketing, and I am currently pursuing an M.A. in arts administration. From the start of business school, my ambition has been to establish my own company. In 2022, I had an enlightening experience that motivated me to find a venture that allowed me to stay true to my newly found principles while discovering entrepreneurship. The idea of creating my art gallery came to me during my postgraduate studies, as I realized that art was a perfect medium for conveying a message.

What is the mission or ethos of Selfless Art?

Through curated collections of abstract, contemporary, and representational art, Selfless Art strives to provide individuals with the self-acceptance necessary to learn what it means to live, exist, and be present, thereby improving their mental health.

It is our mission to remind all individuals that everything they seek lies within. The online exhibitions held at Selfless Art will challenge individuals’ perceptions of who they are and what their true identity is.

It is through self-awareness and self-acceptance that we can begin to see all as one, rather than as separate entities. By learning to love oneself, you will find it easier to love others, have compassion for them, and feel empathy.

Luiz Carlos Chaves Rocha, Falcon Head (2023). Courtesy of Selfless Art.

How is this mission reflected in the artists that the gallery currently represents? What do you look for in artists?

Selfless Art Gallery seeks to collaborate with artists that promote either or both self-acceptance and self-awareness. Considering that this can be displayed in many ways, there are no limitations or stipulations on how this message may be conveyed. Among the artists we represent is Luiz Carlos Rocha, an abstract artist from Brazil, who recently released his Freedom Collection, which is an excellent example of what the gallery is looking for.

In Luiz Rocha’s “Freedom Collection,” we are reminded that we possess the power to achieve our dreams and soar to new heights. This body of work encourages you to free yourself from any negative thoughts or identities that others may have imposed upon you.

Luiz Carlos Chaves Rocha, Grey Rhino Frenzy (2023). Courtesy of Selfless Art.

What do you think is the key element or factor that sets Selfless Art apart from other galleries today?

We are more than an art gallery, we are a lifestyle, we are a way of thinking. Through our spiritual undertones, we promote the notion that you are more than your physical existence. We strive to expose individuals to a way of life that promotes unity. Our aim as a brand is to embody forgiveness, compassion, acceptance, and a higher sense of purpose to make a positive impact on those around us.

Selfless Art has a dynamic online exhibition program, what goes into curating these shows?

Thank you! At the forefront of our mind when creating any online exhibition is how can we create an opportunity for the viewer to self-reflect and go beyond their external circumstance.

We encourage all to view our online exhibitions as they are a terrific way to look at the inner self as well as to have a moment of solitude and silence.

Since Selfless Art’s founding, what is one of the biggest lessons you’ve learned as a gallerist thus far?

Maintaining the integrity of our brand and mission at all times has been a key lesson for us. If something does not align with our mission and what we stand for, then it is not the right partnership for us. Another important lesson we’ve learned is how the creative process of each artist is unique, and how to be supportive without being critical or analytical of the artists’ work. In addition to supporting each artist we represent; we have also learned the importance of establishing boundaries for our relationship.

Selfless Art Gallery tote bag featuring the work of Moopsi.

Is there any gallery news or a forthcoming exhibition that you can tell us about?

Yes! We are making progress toward publishing our next online exhibition. Additionally, we are working on releasing Selfless Art Gallery merchandise that includes tote bags, mugs, and more on our website for purchase! If you’d like to be eligible to win a free Selfless Art Gallery tote bag, follow us on Instagram, like our most recent post, and comment “Only the Self exists.” Contest entry closes Monday, August 7th!

Learn more about Selfless Art here.

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