Impacted by the open source movement—which promotes freely shared, educational software and information—Open Source Gallery applies a similar philosophy to create an approachable space dedicated to the accessibility of contemporary, visual art.

Open Source was founded on 17th Street in Park Slope, Brooklyn in 2007. In 2010, a boiler explosion at Associated, a nearby supermarket, devastated the project space. The fire destroyed half a city block and severely damaged Open Source director Monika Wuhrer’s home, located next door to the gallery. In early 2011, a still-displaced Open Source hosted “Associated,” an exhibit that showcased 24 artists and local losses caused by the fire, in Monika’s derelict residential building. This project was rated number 2 in the top 10 Brooklyn exhibitions of 2011 by L Magazine. Later that year, Open Source found a new space in a renovated carriage house on 17th St. This space, where Open Source still resides, provides an accessible, inclusive environment for art. We reject the traditional notion of a “white cube,” opening our large carriage doors onto the street to invite in passersby and keeping the space flexible for a wide range of media and projects.

2019 exhibitions

Since 2007, we have served hundreds of artists through our events and programs. We have received funding from a variety of organizations and agencies (National Endowment for the Arts, New York State Council on the Arts, NYC Department of Cultural Affairs, NYC Department of Transportation, Brooklyn Arts Council, New York Council for the Humanities, Puffin Foundation, Austrian Cultural Forum, American-Scandinavian Foundation) and have been featured in local, national and international press, such as the New York Times, Hyperallergic, DNAinfo, L Magazine, Arts in America and BOMB Blog among others.

In addition to monthly exhibitions, which feature conceptually-driven art from both local and international artists, we offer additional programs dedicated to creating dialogue about art in our neighborhood. During our monthly lecture series, scholars and members of the community are invited to discuss the role that art plays in the community. Every year in December during our Soup Kitchen program, artists host one night shows at Open Source and cook a meal to be shared with the community. In periodic panel discussions, the community is invited to engage in discussion with academics, artists, and experts. We also offer a highly successful educational program, KOKO, which focuses on the relationship between art, technology and sustainability, encouraging children to innovate and think critically.