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Photograph: Courtesy Transmitter

The best Brooklyn art galleries

Want to know which Brooklyn art galleries are the best ones to visit? We’ve got the top spots here.

By Howard Halle

Brooklyn is full of artists (at least until the get priced out by rising rents), so it only stands to reason that the Borough Of Kings is also full of art galleries (ditto). And in fact, you can find gallery spaces in just about every neighborhood from Greenpoint to Bushwick. These venues couldn’t be any more different from Chelsea's mega-galleries, though they do share the funky vibe of the Lower East Side's gallery scene. Want to know more? Then check out our guide to the best Brooklyn art galleries. 

RECOMMENDED: Full guide to the best art galleries in NYC

Best Brooklyn art galleries

Photograph: Courtesy A.I.R. Gallery

1. A.I.R. Gallery

Art Galleries DUMBO

A.I.R (Artists in Residence, Inc.) has deep roots in New York contemporary gallery scene. Not only was it one of Soho's very first galleries when it opened in 1972, but it was also one of the first artist-run, nonprofit dedicated to women artist in the United States. A.I.R has moved numerous times over the years—from Soho to Chelsea to its current Dumbo home—but it's always kept its feminist focus.

Photograph: Courtesy Transmitter

2. Transmitter

Art Galleries Bushwick

This self-described “collaborative curatorial initiative” was founded in 2014 by partners Rob de Oude, Carl Gunhouse, Sara Jones, Rod Malin, Tom Marquet and Mel Prest. The clean, compact space’s program is multidisciplinary, international and experimental, and has made mounting two-person shows of artists with complementary sensibilities something of a specialty. Transmitter’s address is also home Microscope Gallery and Tiger Strikes Asteroid.

Photograph: Courtesy Motel

3. Motel

Art Galleries Bedford-Stuyvesant

This Bushwick gallery and project space with a focus a young emerging talents was opened in 2015 by artists Riley Duncan, Rosie Motley and Curtis Wallen 

Photograph: Greenpoint Terminal Gallery

4. Greenpoint Terminal Gallery

Art Galleries Greenpoint

Greenpoint Terminal Gallery is run by artist and Boston native Brian Willmont, who opened shop in 2013 in an historic warehouse once occupied by the American Manufacturing Corporation rope factory. Just a stone's throw away from the Greenpoint waterfront, Willmont's space offers an engaging mix of shows by emerging artists working in a variety of mediums.

Photograph: Theodore:Art

5. Theodore:Art

Art Galleries East Williamsburg

Stephanie Theodore open this Brooklyn as both and exhibition space and a consultancy speacializing in emerging and established artists form the United States, the U.K. and Europe.

Photograph: Minus Space

6. Minus Space

Art Galleries DUMBO

It's rare to find a gallery that restricts its program to a particular genre, but that is what Minus Space has done since it opened in 2003. Dedicated to what it calls, "reductive abstract art" this space located in the heart of Dumbo has presented an international roster of artists adhering to the idea that less is more with paintings that emphasize color, flatness and simplified form. 

Photograph: Kustera Projects

7. Kustera Projects

Art Galleries Red Hook

A small storefront space with a big iconoclastic vision, Kustera Projects is run by namesake Anna Kustera, a long time dealer who got her start more than 20 year ago with a gallery in Soho. Over the decades Kustera's operation migrated first to Chelsea and then in 2015 to its current address in Red Hook.   

Photograph: Charles Benton, Courtesy Art In General

8. Art in General

Art Arts centers DUMBO

Originally founded in 1981 by artists Martin Weinstein and Teresa Liszka, this non-profit was a stalwart of the Downtown art scene for more than three decades before moving in January 2016 to its current location in Brooklyn, bringing its program of exhibitions, artist residencies and commissioned projects to a flexible ground-floor space in Dumbo.

Photograph: Courtesy CLEARING, New York/Brussels


Art Galleries East Williamsburg

This space with an all-caps name is the New York branch of a gallery in Brussels, Belgium, and like the home office, the Brooklyn shop focuses on contemporary art by an international roster of young emerging artists with up-to-the-minute sensibilities.

Photograph: Courtesy Luhring Augustine Bushwick

10. Luhring Augustine Bushwick

Art Galleries East Williamsburg

The Brooklyn branch of the powerhouse gallery founded in 1985 by co-owners Lawrence R. Luhring and Roland J. Augustine is notable for being the only blue-chip operation of its kind in Bushwick. Like the home office in Chelsea Luhring Augustine Bushwick presents work by some of the leading names in contemporary art.

Photograph: Courtesy Microscope Gallery

11. Microscope Gallery

Art Galleries Bushwick

This Bushwick gallery, founded by artist-curators Elle Burchill and Andrea Monti in former auto parts shop in 2010, specializes in film, video, sound, digital and performance art (one particular standout in the last category was a 2011 event in which artist Marni Kotak gave birth to a child in the gallery). Microscope Gallery is also notable for showing the work of such pioneering figures of the 1960s and ’70s avant-garde as Jonas Mekas, George Maciunas and Michael Snow.

12. 106 Green

Art Contemporary art Greenpoint

While it may seem confusing, this Greenpoint gallery is actually located at 104 Green Street instead of at 106 Green as it’s name implies. It’s abbreviated hours—open for only five hours each Sunday–is necessitated by the fact that 106 Green serves as the living room of a ground floor apartment during the rest of the week. Nonetheless, this space founded in 2012 by artists Mitchell Wright, Ridley Howard and Holly Coulis, has become a noted player in Brooklyn’s emerging contemporary artist scene, especially since the appointment of independent curator Jon Lutz as the gallery’s director in 2016.

Photograph: Courtesy Pioneer Works

13. Pioneer Works

Art Arts centers Red Hook

This Red Hook non-profit, founded in 2012 by artist Dustin Yellin, occupies a warehouse dating from 1866, that was once home to one of the country's largest ironworks. With 27,000 square feet and ceilings soaring 40 feet high, the space hosts a lively program of exhibitons, installations, performances, artist residences and classes.

Photograph: Courtesy Sardine BK

14. Sardine

Art Bushwick

Founded in 2011 by artist Lacey Fekishazy, Sardine is aptly name thanks to a space. There’s nothing fishy, though about it exhibitions which features merging and mid-career artists dedicated to art for art’s sake.

Photograph: Joerg Lohse, courtesy Signal

15. Signal

Art Contemporary art East Williamsburg

This venue originally started out as a studio shared by artists Alexander Johns and Kyle Clairmont Jacques who decided to become gallerists because they felt that local art wasn’t being served well by the neighborhood’s existing exhibition spaces. Since then, they’ve been presenting young emerging artists from Brooklyn and beyond.

Photograph: Courtesy We Buy Gold

16. We Buy Gold

Art Contemporary art Bedford-Stuyvesant

Opened in March 2017, this Bedford-Stuyvesant space is the side project of Joeonna Bellorado-Samuels, a neighborhood resident and also director at Jack Shainman Gallery in Chelsea. Along with partner Aryn DrakeLee-Williams of The Mistake Room in Los Angeles, Bellorado-Samuels conceived of We Buy Gold as a "roving" enterprise that will periodically change locations.

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