Spotlight: The White Room Gallery Makes Grand Entrance in East Hampton with Inaugural Exhibition

Bringing its signature flair to the exclusive enclave, the gallery's inaugural show questions 'Naughty or Nice?'

Rock Therrien, Flamin' Hot (2023). Courtesy of the White Room Gallery, Easthampton.

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What You Need to Know: Helmed by dynamic duo Andrea McCafferty and Kat O’Neill, the White Room Gallery recently relocated to a larger space in the prestigious East Hampton community following eight years in Bridgehampton. The new location offers a sculpture gallery at its front, and expanded storage as well as—perhaps most importantly—exhibition space, allowing for more ambitious shows and presentations. The inaugural exhibition is “Naughty or Nice?” an intriguing and often cheeky group show that promises to entice viewers to reconsider common artistic themes and, from a macro perspective, the purpose of art on the whole. On view through February 4, the show features work by Rock Therrien, Michael Lotenero, and Paul D. Fuentes, to name just a few, with each artist bringing their own signature voice and style to the exhibition’s theme.

Why We Like It: The White Room Gallery garnered a staunch following over the course of its tenure in Bridgehampton, and its unveiled new space in East Hampton and its premier show offers an opportune moment for visitors to either revisit or discover the gallery’s program and artists. “Naughty or Nice?” remains true to the gallery’s ethos of presenting thought-provoking shows and fostering meaningful dialogue around contemporary art, while simultaneously incorporating elements of levity and even humor. Works depicting recognizable people like Jean-Michel Basquiat and David Bowie commingle with fictitious—but equally recognizable—figures like Charlie Brown, presenting questions around perception, celebrity, and modes of figuration. Together, the show buzzes with exciting opportunities to reappraise the foundations of visual art as well as to be mesmerized by the diverse range of artistic styles and mediums.

According to the Gallery: “Some artists entertain while others entice, but what would the holidays be without a little spice? A devil licking an ice cream cone is both amusing and bemusing. King of Cadaques is a wonderful abstract work that pays homage to Cadaques, a small fishing village in Spain that captivated Dali, Miro, and Picasso. A piece that begs the question was this King loved or feared and as Machiavelli posited, which is better?

Femme fatales of no acclaim but notorious all the same as they look on with innocence, if not blatant amusement, as their respective ex’s meet suspicious demises.

The allure of the provocateur. It is a theme that has resonated throughout history and will no doubt continue to engage forevermore.

Though we didn’t intend to steal Santa’s thunder by appropriating his naughty or nice list, we truly enjoy seeing it brought to life through a delightful curation of art. Spiderman versus The Joker by a master Lego engineer. No telling who wins that battle as obviously neither can escape. Beautiful pages of books shot to obscure what words lie within. City streets painted with just enough detail to hide all their secrets.

Art is a fascinating creature with so many voices. Is it here to calm, comfort, challenge, excite, entertain, shock? The list could go on and on, but the amazing and wonderful thing is that it is still present and ever evolving and we love being part of that evolution. Whether it be naughty or nice.”

See inside the exhibition and featured works below.

Installation view of “Naught or Nice?” (2023–24). Courtesy of the White Room Gallery, East Hampton.

Grace Baley, Basquiat Boxing (2023). Courtesy of the White Room Gallery, East Hampton.

Installation view of “Naught or Nice?” (2023–24). Courtesy of the White Room Gallery, East Hampton.

Michael Lotenero, King of Cadaques (2023). Courtesy of the White Room Gallery, East Hampton.

Installation view of “Naught or Nice?” (2023–24). Courtesy of the White Room Gallery, East Hampton.

Naughty or Nice?” is on view through February 4, 2024, at the White Room Gallery, 3 Railroad Avenue, East Hampton, New York.

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