Sunday, June 15, 2008

‘Art In the Park Draws’ Artists, Community to Bay Ridge’s ‘Left Bank’

Narrows Botanical Gardens/Gallery 364 Series Frames Community’s Arts Renaissance

By Harold Egeln
Brooklyn Eagle

BAY RIDGE – The Bay Ridge art scene, experiencing a cultural renaissance, has gained a park-side waterfront venue, a living painting on the pastoral canvass of the Narrows Botanical Gardens, through the new Art in the Park Summer Series.

Spending this past Sunday in the park with Georgine Benvenuto, photographer and Gallery 364 owner, and Joan Regan, a founder of the Narrows Botanical Gardens, were several artists. A few of them were displaying for the first time at the new outdoor summertime series and interacting with other artists and the community. They experienced the joy of sharing, and, now and then, the happiness of a sale of their original creations.

Full article here.

Thursday, June 5, 2008


Bay Ridge Celebrates Gallery 364’s First Year
by Harold Egeln (, published online 05-22-2008

Artworks and Photos Get Kudos from Civic And Business Leaders at Anniversary Show
By Harold EgelnBrooklyn Eagle
BAY RIDGE — A homegrown art gallery and studio, Bay Ridge’s first, is attracting a large artistic community around Bay Ridge through the vision of a photographer and her friends. The grassroots venue for that vision, Gallery 364, held its first anniversary celebration at a reception on Thursday evening in the historic house that it calls home.
“Bay Ridge needs more of this,” said state Senator Marty Golden upon his first visit to the gallery, located at 364 72nd Street and open to the public by appointment. “What Georgine Benvenuto is doing demonstrates a lot of potential for our community’s artistic resources. I’m very impressed with what she has created here.”
Bay Ridge resident Benvenuto, a staff photographer for the Brooklyn Eagle, is the founder and curator of the gallery, along with friends in the artistic community, and was in focus in Bay Ridge’s viewfinder of congratulations.
“This is fantastic!” said Shelia Brody, co-owner of The Spa and Wellness Center on Third Avenue, attending the gallery for the first time. “This is just what the community has needed for a long time.” What visitors see is a full first floor of gallery space with four open rooms that flow one into the other like the turning of a book’s pages. A bending hallway adds to the spacious sensation of exploration and inspiration.
“You’re in this wonderful art gallery that could be in any of the world’s art centers. And, then, you look out the back porch window and there’s our Bay Ridge with its backyard gardens. What a wonderful feeling!” said delighted student Alex Shamin about Gallery 364.
Shamin, a friend who helped create and build the space with Benvenuto, has watched and experienced Gallery 364’s first year. “For every show there are new people who attend and who are exhibited. More people get involved with each new show. I’m very glad that we have this here in our community.”
The first anniversary show, running through the end of May, features many of the artworks and photos that were best in shows and honorable mentions in the previous theme shows. They include “9/11,” “Timeless,” “Bridges,” “Seasons,” “Music,” “Skin” and “Windows,” with several of the artists and photographers at the reception.
Snapshots and Brushstrokes of Praise
Tony Denonno, a longtime photographer and award-winning film/video maker in Bay Ridge was glad for the venue. “It’s incredible to have this here and see all the work that goes into it. Here we have a wonderful art gallery in Bay Ridge, founded and run by a talented and down-to-earth person, our Georgine Benvenuto. There’s been a need for artists to come together and connect, and now we have it.”
“It’s fantastic having a place to exhibit the arts through this studio in Bay Ridge,” said photographer Gary Heller. “I like the opportunity to show my works right here.” Photographer Dave Foss, another Bay Ridge resident, agreed. “It’s a great place. This is exactly what we need in Bay Ridge.”
Enthused supporter of the arts and culture in Bay Ridge, attorney and newsman Charles Otey, marketing director of the Merchants of Third Avenue, is delighted about Gallery 364. “This is magnificent! Bay Ridge is opening its arms to the arts and we need more of this. I enjoy every show, and every time I came here I see new faces and new artists.”
“I have to say that I am very proud of what is being done here,” said Tom Kane, an Eagle writer and Brooklyn-One Theater executive director. “Georgine had a dream a year ago. Now it’s a reality for everyone who appreciates the arts.”
“I’m looking forward to the tenth anniversary,” said civic activist Peter Killen, a retired detective from the 68th Precinct. “Some of the paintings and artworks are and will be hanging in our home.”
An impressed John Qualione, Senator Golden’s media aide, also on his first visit to the gallery, said, “I didn’t know what to expect coming here. Now I see that this is very unique to the community. More people should come. It’s like bringing the art world of Manhattan into Brooklyn, but this is Brooklyn homegrown at its best.”
Figure Drawing Sessions and Camera Club Are Next at the Gallery.
“I’m thrilled with the turnout,” said Benvenuto, thanking all those who attended the celebration. “Now it’s time to take the next step with the community of artists we’ve created. We’re funded by friends, artists and myself.”
The next step includes classes at Gallery 364, starting with figure drawing sessions with instructor Richard Scott. The sessions will feature three-hour classes with a live model. A community camera club will soon follow.
“Gallery 364 is creating a sense of community for the arts and arts education,” said Scott. “Through the studio and classes we have an interactive venue to engage the community. There’s certainly a strong sense of community in Bay Ridge.”
The next show starting in mid-June is “Coney Island.” For more information about Gallery 364 shows, gallery visit-appointments and classes call (917) 767-3848.
© Brooklyn Daily Eagle 2008


Announcing a very special outdoor art event open to all artists!Joan Regan (volunteer and organizer), of Narrows Botanical Gardens (NBG), and Georgine Benvenuto, photographer and Gallery 364 proprietor, have joined forces to create "ART IN THE PARK," a recurring event in Bay Ridge to celebrate the Sundays of summer.This very special series of shows will allow artists the opportunity to display and sell their works in a unique and pastoral setting: the Narrows Botanical Gardens - a 4.5 acre garden located at Shore Road and 71st St. in the Bay Ridge area of Brooklyn."ART IN THE PARK" will be held the second Sunday of every month for the summer of 2008, from June 8th through September 14, 2008. Show hours are from 11 a.m. -4 p.m.; artists' setup time begins at 10 a.m. Mark your calendar for all four "ART IN THE PARK" dates for 2008: June 8, July 13, August 10 and September 14. "ART IN THE PARK" will take place rain or shine. Local photographers, painters, and a variety of mixed media artists will be selling their latest original art pieces.Artists interested in participating in "ART IN THE PARK" need to pre-register by contacting Joan Regan at . Artists' spots are available only to those who have pre-registered. A $25 annual membership fee payable to the NBG will get you a spot for all four Sundays. Be the first to register - the first "ART IN THE PARK on June 8 is right around the corner!Gallery 364 is housed in an historic 1910 limestone, and is privately owned and operated by Benvenuto, a longtime Bay Ridge resident. Gallery 364 is the only fine arts studio/gallery in the Bay Ridge neighborhood and has been featured on Brooklyn Community Access Television and Channel 12. Gallery 364 offers affordable classes in digital and film photography, digital printing, painting, watercolor, drawing, and other media. Every month, the gallery conducts open competitions and the winners' artwork is displayed in a group show. If you'd like more information about Gallery 364, contact Georgine Benvenuto at 917-767-3848 or send an email to NBG was created in 1995 and is maintained by a group of dedicated volunteers. Formerly an abandoned part of Shore Road Park that had been allowed to decline, the NBG is now a meticulously-kept garden and greenspace that has become a cornerstone of Bay Ridge. Every year, the NBG hosts major events in the park: Outdoor Movies on the Lawn; the Halloween Canine Costume Contest; and the Craft Fair and Art Show, to name a few. Overlooking the Narrows, the NBG affords nature-lovers the chance to admire several Rose Gardens, a Redwood Grove, an Alpine Garden, a Moon Garden, and a Butterfly Garden, among others. For more information about the Narrows Botanical Gardens, log on to

Monday, June 2, 2008

Call for Coney Island Show

We at Gallery 364 "Bay Ridge's First Art Gallery" are pleased to go forth

with our June 2008 Art Competition, entitled "CONEY ISLAND".

We believe in giving just a keyword to our artists and see what they come
forward with in terms of visual artwork.

If you are interested in submitting work for this competition, for consideration please call Georgine for an appointment to show your work,
or email jpegs for review. No URL's please.

The entry fee is $25.00 per piece, for work accepted, with a limit of 4 pieces per artist. All art must be ready to hang.

All art will be for sale. Gallery 364 retains 30% of all sales.
Gallery 364 will award:

One "Best In Show" $200 Prize (ALL Winners will be awarded at Opening Reception)
Two "Honorable Mentions" (Each will recieve a Gift Certificate to be used towards Art or Photography Classes at Gallery 364 Studio)

Deadline for submissions: Friday, June 13th, 2008

Artists Opening Reception: Thursday, June 19th, 2008 (by invitation only)

Show dates: June 19th thru June 30th, 2008
Contact Georgine for more info:

Gallery 364
364 72nd Street
Brooklyn, NY 11209