About: The Billboard Gallery is an alternative exhibition space for artists proposed by Abigail Gunnels and supported by The Engaged Pluralism Initiative (EPI) at Vassar College. The gallery will focus on Hudson Valley artists. By choosing this location/billboard it will blur that boundary between the Vassar campus and the city of Poughkeepsie. Colleges often have, or are perceived to have, an “invisible fence” surrounding them, creating a separation between the institution and the city/town where they exist. By creating this alternative space to showcase artists, The Billboard Gallery will engage with Vassar and Poughkeepsie communities, and the larger Hudson Valley region by showcasing local artists’ work outside of a traditional gallery setting.
Founder: Abigail Gunnels is an artist and educator living in Poughkeepsie, NY. She shares a studio with her wife in the Fall Kill Creative Works building (Art Centro) in downtown Poughkeepsie. Her practice includes working with photography (analog and digital), video, mixed media, and most recently jewelry design. She became interested in this billboard on Hooker Ave a couple years ago as a possible space to engage with artists in her community. She was drawn to this location for the Billboard Gallery because it is located on the border of Vassar College (where she works) and the City of Poughkeepsie (where she lives).
Supported By: The Engaged Pluralism Initiative (EPI) at Vassar college. “The Engaged Pluralism Initiative is a campus-wide initiative dedicated to building communities of belonging, inclusion, and equity at the college.” The grant was created in collaboration by the EPI working group, Inclusion, Belonging and Community Building Through the Arts.
Special thanks to: Vassar College, Engaged Pluralism Initiative (EPI) groups at Vassar, Academic Computing Services at Vassar (ACS), Highway Displays, Amy Laughlin, and Baynard Bailey