Whitebox Art Center is a 501(c)(3) non-profit institution dedicated to organizing contemporary arts projects and programs that engage the public through visual art, film and video, performance, sound and poetry. Through exhibitions, commissions, public programming and residencies, Whitebox serves as a laboratory for innovative ideas and art forms. Adhering to its original mandate to present experimental art in the spirit of the avant-garde, Whitebox continues to be an uncompromising catalyst for transformative artistic exchange on a local and global scale.
WHITEBOX VISION STATEMENT
Now in its sixteenth year, Whitebox Art Center adheres to its original mandate to present ground-breaking contemporary art through original commissions and innovative programming. Whitebox works with a dynamic roster of forward-thinking artists and curators, to produce and present artworks and exhibitions that encompass the visual arts, experimental media, sound, poetry and video. Whitebox stands out among New York City’s arts organizations because of its avant-garde spirit and commitment to serving as an alternative space in which a diverse public audience and artistic community can explore, learn and engage with new ideas. Embarking on its newest phase in Manhattan’s historically and culturally rich Lower East Side, Whitebox will continue to develop both within its walls and beyond, serving as a catalyst for transformative artistic exchange on a local and global scale.
Whitebox Art Center was founded in Chelsea, in 1998 by Juan Puntes, with the support of a group of international artists and curators. Whitebox was nominated for “Best Group Show” by the International Art Critics Association for Plural Speech, curated by Dominique Nahas in 1998, and again in 1999 for a survey of Viennese Actionists, Günter Brus and Hermann Nitsch. During its first decade, Whitebox Art Center built a reputation for thought-provoking exhibitions and initiatives that fostered engagement among a broad audience, including neighborhood low-income housing communities and the Bayview Women’s Prison. Whitebox was also an active producer of public art projects, including ‘Out-of-the-Box,’ a series of special presentations on outdoor billboards, bus stops and public transportation. In 2004, Whitebox initiated the street-level venue [VideoBox], in which artists and curators presented short films and videos to passersby. Whitebox relocated to its current headquarters on Broome Street, in Manhattan’s Lower East Side arts district, in September 2008. In 2013, Whitebox brought Antoine “Tony” Guerrero on board as executive and artistic director, setting the course for a new phase of programming, commissions and innovation aimed at further developing and expanding its role as an arts institution.