Two gallery owners talk about community-driven neighborhoods in Harlem

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Being in Chelsea, we represent all of these Brown and Black artists and we’re in this neighborhood where their own community does not get to come and see them,” Oliver described to Artsy. “We always represented these groups that did these amazing works but no one pays attention to them because they don’t have the white European background…this has been the vision for Claire Oliver Gallery for the past 30 years.”

The audience for any Harlem cultural center is not just out-of-town art-goers but residents and, often, the youth. Both Oliver and Oton highlighted to Artsy how many children come out to the gallery openings, something that is uncommon in the Chelsea district.