1708 Gallery's mission is to present exceptional new art. 1708 Gallery is committed to providing opportunities for artistic innovation for emerging and established artists and to expanding the understanding and appreciation of new art for the public.
One of the longest-running non-profit arts spaces in the US, 1708 has been a leading space for artistic exchange and experimental thinking in Richmond since its founding in 1978 by a group of faculty members from Virginia Commonwealth University.
1708 presents six to eight exhibitions annually, representing a broad range of media from painting and sculpture to installation, video and new media, and featuring artists of regional, national and international renown. With a focus on early-career artists, 1708 strives to foster artistic development and encourages the creation of new work by providing honoraria and installation support. Past exhibiting artists include Ira Eduardovna, Ben Stout, Brent Green, Sonya Clark, Dina Kelberman and Jennifer and Kevin McCoy.
As part of its exhibition program, 1708 Gallery organizes InLight Richmond, an annual public exhibition of light-based art and performance. InLight Richmond’s mission is to inspire and engage the community with contemporary art in public spaces, promote access to contemporary art, and to create opportunities for the community to experience unique and diverse parts of Richmond.
Additional programming includes Monster Drawing Rally, a live art-making experience featuring approximately 60 artists, and Studio Tours, self-guided afternoons that provide unique access to artists’ work spaces.
As part of its mission, 1708 Gallery provides educational opportunities for understanding contemporary art. 1708 hosts artist talks for each exhibition and organizes Assembler, a discussion group that constructs meaning around the gallery’s exhibitions. ext.1708, 1708 Gallery’s on-line journal, continues these dialogues as critics, curators, art history students, artists and writers contribute written responses, expanding an artist’s vision beyond the walls of the gallery and the run of the exhibition. Finally, 1708 fosters younger artists through the Cindy Neuschwander Scholarship, given annually to a graduating high school student who plans to study art in college.