It seemed that Project 4 was simply off to a slow start this year. The gallery posted a notice on its website that it was between shows and gave no indication that it was closing up shop.
But as winter stretched into spring, it became clear that the Project 4 wasn’t coming back. The gallery’s only full-time employee moved to New York. Social media accounts went unattended. Finally, the Project 4 website went down in May.
After eight years of hosting art shows in the District, Project 4 has quietly closed. Katherine Tzu-Lan Mann‘s “Feverland” was the gallery’s last exhibit.
The gallery got its start back in 2006 at 9th and U streets NW, in the space that is now home to the Dickson Wine Bar. In 2008, Project 4 moved to a second-floor space at U and 14th Streets NW. Hamiltonian still occupies the ground floor there.
Greg Kearley, the gallery’s owner, has not responded to requests for comment.
Margaret Boozer and Foon Sham, two prominent figures in the D.C. art scene, are among the artists the gallery represented. Project 4’s stable also included many artists outside D.C, with a strong emphasis on abstract painters, including Beau Chamberlain and Tricia Keightley.
Project 4 was always something of a venture gallery. Kearley, an architect, along with another architect, Doug Dahlkemper, launched Project 4 with original co-founders Gilles Allume and Ted Goldman. Kearley especially was active in the art scene; he participated in talks about forming a D.C. art dealer alliance some years back.
Along with Connersmith and Hemphill Fine Arts, Project 4 was one of the few galleries to invest in an architecturally significant experience for seeing art. Both of its locations were clean, gleaming, light-filled spaces that asked something of the artists who showed there. From the very start, space was key to the gallery’s success.
Image via Project 4