New York Gallery Cheim and Read to Close Its Doors After 26 Years

The gallery's longtime director and partner Maria Bueno will carry on with a new venture opening in 2024.

John Cheim and Howard Read. Image © Patrick McMullen, photo: Clint Spaulding/PatrickMcMullan.com.

New York gallery Cheim & Read will close its doors next month after 26 years of operation, making its newly-opened solo show of Kathe Burkhart, which runs through December 23, its last public exhibition.

Maria Bueno, the gallery’s longtime director and partner, will launch a new dealership Bueno & Co. next year, focusing on private sales of historical and contemporary artworks. Bueno will be inheriting a bulk of the blue-chip names represented by Cheim & Read, such as Jean-Michel Basquiat, Louise Bourgeois, Joan Mitchell, Alice Neel, and Sean Scully for her new venture.

Other artists that will be on Bueno’s roster include Lynda Benglis, William Eggleston, Louise Fishman, Ron Gorchov, Pat Steir, and Matthew Wong.

The announcement came Tuesday night, about a week after the opening of Burkhart’s exhibition.

“Cheim & Read has had the privilege of working with an exceptional group of artists, mounting important exhibitions, and producing scholarly catalogues over the past 26 years,” the gallery announced on its Instagram account. “We are grateful for your support over these many years.”

Comments responding to the gallery’s announcement soon flooded in. Manhattan-based painter and filmmaker Maureen Dougherty, who had a solo show at Cheim & Read in July, thanked the gallery for their support over the years. Many other artists and art lovers similarly extolled the gallery’s “stunning legacy” of exhibitions, calling it the “end of an era.”

Dealers John Cheim and Howard Read founded the gallery in Chelsea on West 23rd Street in 1997, with an exhibition of work by Louise Bourgeois and Jenny Holzer. Since them, they have worked with many leading contemporary artists, particularly women, as well as major artist’s estates and foundations. The gallery moved to a new space at 547 West 25th Street in 2001.

Cheim, who was a director at Robert Miller Gallery for two decades prior to co-founding Cheim & Read, sold works from his personal collection at Sotheby’s New York during last week’s contemporary evening and day sales. The collection featured pieces by artists such as Basquiat, Bourgeois, Benglis, and Neel, as well as Holzer, Gorchov, Robert Mapplethorpe, Alex Katz, and Cy Twombly. Sotheby’s said 100 percent of Cheim’s consigned collection sold, achieving a combined $34.7 million including fees, against presale estimates of $25.7 million to $38.1 million.

Most of this came from Joan Mitchell’s diptych work Sunflowers (1990–91), which sold for $27.9 million including fees, against an estimates of $20 million to $30 million. The work was given to Cheim by the artist in 1992, the year she died.

 

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