Finding a niche

By GREG COOK  |  June 4, 2010

A week ago Wednesday night, a crowd overflowed onto the sidewalk in front of Judi Rotenberg — which is scheduled to close for good on June 19 — for the Newbury Street gallery's final opening party. The show is a handsome sampling of artists the gallery has worked with over the years.

Rotenberg rented a basement space on Newbury Street and began selling her paintings out on the sidewalk in 1970. The following year, she moved into the gallery's current home, a storefront at 130 Newbury Street. Her daughter Abigail Ross Goodman, who took over in 2001, and director Kristen Dodge fashioned the gallery into one of the sharpest venues in town by presenting a mix of cutting-edge work by younger local artists (Ria Brodell, Dave Cole, Brian Knep, Douglas Weathersby) and established local painters (Zygmund Jankowski, Jason Berger) more connected with the gallery's painterly roots.

Ross Goodman says the gallery has been doing well financially, but she wants to get out of the art business and explore possibilities in public art, non-profits, and teaching. Dodge plans to open her own gallery in New York in September.

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