NRG Gallery Opens in Westgate
Nicholas Gonzalez has plans to reinvent what it means to operate an art gallery in Columbus. This artist-turned-gallery-owner was tired of seeing other local venues managed with a rigid traditional structure, so he decided to change things up when recently opening NRG Gallery on West Broad Street.
Located in the Westgate neighborhood, far off the beaten path of the local arts scene, this new gallery promises a more artist-friendly environment, a more affordable commission structure, and open arms to include a wide variety of artists and artwork.
We recently spoke with Nicholas Gonzalez to talk about his new gallery. Read on for our full interview.
Q: First, can you tell us a bit about yourself?
A: I was born in Columbus in 1946 to a Mayan father and an Irish mother. I attended St. Francis of Assisi grade school and St Thomas Aquinas Prep School. I served four years in the Navy and received an honorable discharge. I worked as a restaurant manager, warehouse manager and finally as a insurance underwriter when I retired in 2004. In 2004 my wife died of breast cancer and I was left to raise our 12 year old daughter, Scarlett, who is currently the co-owner of the gallery.
Q: So what led you into wanting to open a gallery?
Q: So I take it that the NRG Gallery will have a different type of relationship between artists and gallery owner?
A: Yes, I decided to open an artist-friendly gallery on the west side of Columbus in the beautiful Westgate district, a true residential oasis, where I live with my daughter today. The rent is one quarter what they are paying in the Short North which gives me rein to offer the artists very low exhibition fees and 25% commission with a two month non-exclusive contract.
Q: What types of artwork will be shown at your new gallery?
A: We currently exhibit twenty artists whose styles range from the bizarre to the serene, impressionistic to abstract and mixed media to photography. As a matter of fact, our youngest photographer, Kayley Moore, is 16 years old and does fantastic work. We are open to all the people of Columbus.
Q: Do you think being the only gallery in the Westgate neighborhood will be a benefit or a hurdle to attracting an audience and building a base of arts patrons?
Q: Are there any good opportunities coming up for people to come check out what is going on at your gallery space?
We also offer art lessons to the autistic taught by Aaron Grover, an experienced autism art instructor who has a BE in art education from Ohio State University. This is a very unique gallery offering and we feel we can make a difference in their lives.
Of course, on our staff we also have a very fine portrait painter, who recently painted Mayor Coleman, an excellent muralist, who did all the Vaquero restaurant murals and several other artists who are interior design enthusiasts. Our artists can create whatever you wish.
We hope that our gallery will be a success and a shining beacon to other artists and art enthusiasts.
NRG Gallery is located at 3105 West Broad St. More info can be found at www.NRGGalleryLLC.com.