DUMBO studio gives artists space to grow


It was just days ago that this DUMBO gallery was packed with people admiring their representation of the neighborhood through photographs, film, sounds, and charcoal drawings. Now, Faranu and Mike Redman walked around as they looked at the vacant area they once called their studio.

“We cannot thank Sadia and Transparent Studio at Bose Pacia enough,” Faranu Redman said as she looked onto a wall that was coated with images of bridges and baby dolls hanging from telephones lines,

It’s only fitting they thank Bose Pacia art gallery because this wouldn’t have been possible if it wasn’t for the gallery’s unique program.

Launched in January 2012, Transparent Studio is a visual arts program founded by Bose Pacia and is hosted in its  gallery space. Applicants are chosen for the studio program through a submissions process based on project proposal and artistic merit.

“We found there was a need for space for emerging and mid-career artists,” said Sadia Rehman, director of Bose Pacia.

For the past 20 years, Bose Pacia has been a commercial space that specialized in South Asian art. It brought  South Asian art to the United States in 1994. Since then Bose Pacia has been able to fill a niche that wasn’t there before.

The owners felt something else was needed and wanted to try something new. They went about it by running Transparent Studio, in which the public and artist are encouraged to interact with each other during the artists’ progression in their work.

“We wanted to do something experimental in that it’s an open studio. The public is invited to come in and view the artist process and ask them questions while they’re working,” said Rehman.

On average, Bose Pacia receives around 200 to 300 applications. There is no fee to apply and there is no charge when the space is granted to the artist. The only thing that is required is for the artist to cover the cost of supplies for the work.

“It’s such a great opportunity. It’s hard to come by a space that is actually this big in New York City and in the heart of DUMBO,” Rehman said.  “Each of the artist that we’ve had has gone kind of outside of their comfort zone and has experimented with different mediums.”

Now, Bose Pacia is transitioning to a non-profit and closing down the commercial entity..

“We do plan to have a panel of past artists and just to talk about their experience at Transparent Studio and what they are doing now,” said Rehman. “We just want this space and this program to be something where an artist can come in and just continue to grow.”

Multimedia presentation: Randy Rojas.

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