The gallery was created in Warsaw, Poland by famous polish photographers Tomek Sikora and Andrzej Swietlik. It has appeared throughout Europe, Asia and Australia, and is now coming to the United States in collaboration with Union City's sponsored Realita at the Silk Mill, at 540 39th St., which has become a central artists' community in the city.
William Coronado, Piotr Olszewski and Silk Mill owner David Melamed curated the exhibit and brought the work to the Silk Mill.
According to the gallery's official Web site, "It is homeless because it has no permanent address. It appears for a short while, after which it disappears only to reappear again in a completely different place."
Running from Saturday, Sept. 17, to Oct. 2, the Homeless Gallery will feature works from many in the Silk Mill's artist community, as well as other artists throughout Union City. It will also include art from longtime participants throughout the world such as Eva Rubinstein, Richard Horowitz and Zygmunt Malinowski.
"We have 70 photographers from all over the world, and there will be more than 100 photographers from the New York and New Jersey areas," said Olszewski.
'Parasolka Floats' at the Silk Mill
It was last April that Olszewski and fellow artist Jacob Bochen were exhibiting some of their latest work at the now defunct Havana Bay Coffee on 32nd Street and Kennedy Boulevard.
"David came to see us and he told us about the [Silk Mill] and asked me if I was interested in having a studio there, and that is when I told him about the Homeless Gallery," said Olszewski, who had been a regular participant in the gallery. "I heard about them through the Internet two years ago and sent my work to [exhibits] in Warsaw and Milburn, Australia."
Melamed became intrigued by the idea of the Homeless Gallery and agreed to offer his space for it.
"We thought it was a good match and they had not [exhibited] in the United States yet, as far as I know," said Melamed.
"I immediately contacted Tomek Sikora and Andrzej Swietlik and they liked the idea," said Olszewski. Keeping in mind the idea of a traveling gallery, the exhibit was named "Parasolka Floats," which inspires the notion of traveling in a sort of "Mary Poppins" style.
"Parasolka means umbrella, so it covers and protects art, which allows us to promote our art philosophy and life," said Olszewski. "It's a free way to give artists the chance to show some of their work."
In fact, Olszewski encourages gallery patrons to bring along their umbrellas and move as if they are floating around the buildings to view the displays.
"We have a lot of good photographers and artists from Europe, Korea, Japan and Australia [to name a few], and people keep coming to the last moment," said Olszewski.
Featured in the exhibit will be the "Hidden Stairway." As patrons come to enjoy the Homeless Gallery exhibit, they will not be going through the everyday entrances to the Silk Mill buildings, but will walk through a set of abandoned staircases in the main building that have gone unused over the last 60 years.
Visitors will get the chance to experience concept of light and sound as they travel through natural and sometimes dark, wet areas that will lead them to the exhibits.
Since its inception in 2002, the Homeless Gallery above all else was meant to give photography from all over the world a home, for a short while. People from across the globe submit their pieces to exhibit wherever the gallery appears.
An important part of this revolutionary vision is that anyone can exhibit, including professionally trained artists and average citizens who dabble in an artistic hobby. There are no demands placed on the participants as to the subject, technique, format or the number of works shown. The artists also set up the displays of their own work.
Finding a location for the gallery is an ongoing need. Throughout the years the gallery has made itself at home in areas such as shipyards, garages and factories like the old Silk Mill, which used to be the areas chief manufacturer at the pinnacle of Union City's textile era.
Artists will display their work throughout the Silk Mill complex and patrons will be treated to the musical styling and self-experimental sounds of local performer Lee Boice and company.
The public can attend an opening reception scheduled for Sept. 17 at 7 p.m. The exhibit will not be taken down until Oct, 2, when there will also be a closing reception. Participants will be able to submit work throughout the length of the exhibit.
"You can participate even to the last day of the show, which is how [the show] has always run to this point," said Olszewski. "This is our first time in the states [so we don't know what to expect]. [The show] in Berlin was different from London."
Currently, over 200 artists have participated in the gallery.
Visiting hours are Saturdays and Sundays from 12 p.m. to 6 p.m. The public can also make weekday appointments to see the exhibit by calling (201) 902-0570. For more information, visit www.sponsoredrealita.com and www.galeriabezdomna.art.pl.
Don't forget to bring your umbrellas.