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Hidden Gems: Meet Adam Gross of SPACE 1028

Today we’d like to introduce you to Adam Gross.

Alright, so thank you so much for sharing your story and insight with our readers. To kick things off, can you tell us a bit about how you got started?
I’ve been working in the visual arts for around 25 years. Prior I was working in finance and was just not happy there. Since then, I’ve worked in (and with) galleries, auctions, museums, art fairs, and publishing of limited editions. My first job as Director of The Kantor Gallery was a blast and I learned a lot. I got the gig based on my enthusiasm, knowledge, and a BA in Art History. After a few years there, I felt I needed a stronger conceptual framework for the art with which I worked, so went back to UCLA for my MA in Art History. I’m happy I did. The arts can be a crowded field, so I appreciated the advantage the MA afforded me. That being said, every single gig I’ve had in the arts has come via referral and me taking the initiative. As I’ve gotten older, however, I’m finding rest is important – pacing myself – and that often it’s less about making something happen and more about waiting for the right moment and being ready. What is it they say about good fortune? It’s the intersection of opportunity and preparation. So true. Nowadays, I enjoy working with clients – be they collectors or non-profits – and organizing exhibitions in my new gallery, SPACE 1028 in East Hollywood.

Can you talk to us a bit about the challenges and lessons you’ve learned along the way. Looking back would you say it’s been easy or smooth in retrospect?
Smooth road? Ha! Rarely. Let’s see… 9/11. 2008’s Great Recession. Now Covid… I’ve seen my share of challenges. Heck, working in the arts can be a struggle in and of itself. Often, however, it’s the personal struggles that are most difficult to overcome. The forced downtime in Covid-time has afforded me great opportunities for reflection – I feel very grateful. It’s also provided me the opportunity to develop a new edition company. Maybe my answer is like life: you start with a struggle, work on it, be patient with it, and find the good that can come of it. It’s there… patience. Opening a new gallery five weeks before a global pandemic hasn’t been easy… but the rewards for perseverance have been great.

Great, so let’s talk business. Can you tell our readers more about what you do and what you think sets you apart from others?
SPACE 1028 intentionally omits the word “gallery” from the name. It is a project space – a blank canvas onto which I can project what’s interesting to me and/or where I can develop new ideas. During Covid, the ambitious exhibition schedule I launched with came to a screeching halt… it’s hard to plan when nobody knows what’s coming next. But this slower schedule has afforded me the time to really get to know the work I’m showing… to really live with it. It’s been quite a luxury. I’ve been focusing a lot on prints and works on paper – art that is accessible and easy to view online. Over the coming months, I will slowly start to rebuild a schedule to include paintings and other more ambitious works. But throughout it all, I am enjoying taking the time to get it right… not just get it done. I use SPACE 1028 as a launching pad for my consulting work with private clients and non-profits. The gallery is in a historic 1920s courtyard building on Western Avenue in Hollywood, so I’ve been enjoying the camaraderie with the artists who have studios here. Bringing people in to visit the space and share a quiet moment together has been most rewarding. I’m particularly excited about a new project I’m launching where we will be merging visual effects technologies with the publishing of fine art editions. Never a dull moment… well, mostly never a dull moment. (I enjoy the dull moments from time-to-time as well.)

Any advice for finding a mentor or networking in general?
Well, before Covid, I’d say go to openings. A lot. Now, it’s go to galleries. Schedule your visits. Introduce yourself. Be engaged. Listen. Listen. Listen. Send thank you notes. Share compliments to those who are doing interesting things – yes, even if you don’t know the person. EVERYONE likes to hear something nice about what they are doing… and to know it’s making a difference with someone, somewhere. Forward interesting content to those in your network. Be sincere. Pick up the phone. Listen. Did I mention listening? It’s the greatest gift you can give someone.

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