Joe Sheftel, Appointed to Post at Hammer Museum, Will Close Lower East Side Gallery

The gallery will shutter on October 25.

Joe Sheftel. Photo: Zimbio.

Art dealer Joe Sheftel has announced that he will shutter his eponymous Lower East Side gallery on October 25. The decision to close the space is concurrent with his appointment to director of donor relations at the Hammer Museum in Los Angeles. Sheftel will begin the position in late November.

“It has been exhilarating to run a gallery on the Lower East Side,” Sheftel writes in a statement he sent out over email. “I have so much gratitude for the support we have received from friends, artists, curators, critics, gallerists, collectors, members of the press, art fairs, museums and the art viewing public. The ability to play a role in the careers of artists has been challenging and rewarding, but the time has come to move on to new adventures.”

Prior to opening the space in 2012, Sheftel worked in various galleries, as an art adviser, and even, briefly, as a lawyer. He has shown Alex Da Corte, Adam Henry, and Gary Keuhn, among several others.

The gallery’s current show, “Matthew Watson: Softening Boxes” features paintings that riff on the various sensory experiences of being inside a home. It will run until the 25th.

In his new role, Sheftel will work under director Ann Philbin to spearhead fundraising efforts. The museum is known for its high-profile patrons, and recently hosted a star-studded annual gala attended by Diane Keaton, Julia Roberts, Steve Martin, and Will Ferrell.

In a separate email to artnet News, Sheftel expressed excitement about moving to L.A. “I love the history of art in Los Angeles and I have been inspired to see how it has grown from the time of the light and space artists to the artists producing in L.A. today,” he said. “It seems that there is an increased appreciation for the more democratic artist-centric approach of L.A.’s galleries and museums.”

Sheftel isn’t the first New Yorker itching for a taste of the California sunshine. Gallerists Michele Maccarone and Adam Lindemann have both set up high-profile Los Angeles outposts. However, Sheftel has no plans to open up any kind of gallery space in the future, noting that the museum context “feels like the ideal place to work as part of a team helping realize artistic and curatorial goals.”

Congrats to Joe Sheftel!

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