PR Entrepreneur Hannah Gottlieb-Graham Is All for Team Spirit, Celebrating Emerging Artists, and Getting In Her Morning Workout

We asked the founder and director of ALMA Communications about the things she values most—in art and in life.

Hannah Gottlieb-Graham, 2023. Photograph by Jordan Tiberio.

So much of the art world orbits around questions of value, not only in terms of appraisals and price tags, but also: What is worthy of your time in These Times, as well as your energy, your attention, and yes, your hard-earned cash?

What is the math that you do to determine something’s meaning and worth? What moves you? What enriches your life? In this new series, we’re asking individuals from the art world and beyond about the valuations that they make at a personal level.

Hannah Gottlieb-Graham has a fire in her belly that shows no signs of dying out. In 2020, after leaving a position with Aperture, the young entrepreneur made the daring decision to branch out on her own, founding ALMA Communications, New York-based PR agency focused on contemporary art and social change.

In the three-and-a-half years since, Gottlieb-Graham has been full-throttle business-building, with ALMA Communications earning rising artists and galleries as clients, as well as established voices. In this role, Gottlieb-Graham is known for her precision, tenacity, and her poise—qualities drawn from her background in dance (she studied photography, contemporary art and dance at both the University of Oxford and Sarah Lawrence College).  The hard work is not going unnoticed; this year, ALMA won the PR Net’s ‘Next Gen’ Award for rising arts and culture PR firm.

Though Gottlieb-Graham’s calendar is back-to-back, from events to interviews, she does commit herself to carving out precious personal time. She was married early this year and cherishes quiet time with her husband, as well as celebratory moments with her all-women communications team. She could do without another bad gala dinner, however.

Recently we caught up with Gottlieb-Graham who told us what she values in art and life—and why.

What is the last thing that you splurged on? 
The new ALMA office in the West Village. It’s an absolute dream and was Jennifer Bartlett’s former home and studio!

What is something that you’re saving up for? 
My 2024 team retreat. I’ve organized team retreats for the last two years and they’ve been so much fun. And I believe that having fun with your colleagues is invaluable. 

What would you buy if you found $100? 
A handful of fitness classes at my favorite studios. As a former dancer, making time for a morning workout before my nonstop days is a ritual that’s very important to me. 

Courtesy of Hannah Gottlieb-Graham.

Courtesy of Hannah Gottlieb-Graham.

What makes you feel like a million bucks?
Professionally: Executing a PR campaign that I’m really proud of. Signing a new client that I’ve been dying to connect with. Working a room. 

Personally: The way my husband looks at me. Stepping into my beautifully organized closet. Getting a lymphatic drainage massage.

What do you think is your greatest asset?

My unwavering commitment to storytelling and world-building. My ability to lead (which I’m always working on). My speed. 

What do you most value in a work of art?
Layers. Stories. I’m often drawn to a sense of moodiness. 

Miles Greenberg, 2023. Courtesy of Alma Communications.

Miles Greenberg, 2023. Courtesy of ALMA Communications.

Who is an emerging artist worthy of everyone’s attention? 
My client and wonderful friend Miles Greenberg is a performance artist and sculptor. I’ve worked with Miles for four years now and I’ve seen his career really blossom. He’s pushing the limits of his mental and physical state in ways that nobody else is. 

Other talented friends who I believe are going places quickly—Alteronce Gumby, Caleb Hahne Quintana, Kevin Claiborne, Melissa Joseph, and Pamela Council.

Who is an overlooked artist who hasn’t yet gotten their due? 
Mohammad Gorjestani, a filmmaker and photographer whom I’ve had the pleasure of working with and now call a friend. Mo is well-known and respected in his industry, but I’d love to see him become a household name. I’m eagerly awaiting his first feature film.

What, in your estimation, is the most overrated thing in the art world? 
Bad gala food. We all deserve better. 

What is your most treasured possession? 
My engagement ring and wedding band, which my husband and I designed together with Eva Fehren

Courtesy of Hannah Gottlieb-Graham.

ALMA’s team. Courtesy of Hannah Gottlieb-Graham. Photograph by Jordan Tiberio.

What’s been your best investment? 
Building my extraordinary, all-female team. 

What is something small that means the world to you? 
Monday morning syncs with my girls. We recently started a practice of giving each other individual shoutouts from the week prior, setting concrete goals for the week ahead, and brainstorming best ways to support one another and collaborate. It’s been a great way to connect and say thank you amidst the rapid pace of working in PR. 

What’s not worth the hype?
Cancel culture, without real discourse.

What do you believe is a worthy cause? 
The fight for equity, both in the art world and on a global scale.

What do you aspire to? 
To be a cool art mama in a couple years. My dear friend Noreen Ahmad is my inspiration!  

 


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