AWAD is pleased to announce that Judith Rinehart, owner and director of J. Rinehart Gallery is one of our newest Global Members. As is our practice, with new members, we asked Judith a few questions about her background and gallery.
What is your professional background?
After receiving my BFA in Art History, I began working as a gallery assistant in a well established gallery in Seattle. After nearly seven years and running all aspects of that gallery, I was offered a management/director position at another great gallery that had locations in Seattle and NYC. This opportunity really elevated my experience to where I knew I needed to create my own gallery and I launched J. Rinehart Gallery in 2019. Throughout my gallery career, I served as treasurer of the Seattle Art Dealers Association for 3 years, am currently a chapter co-chair of Art Table’s PNW Chapter, an auction committee member for the non-profit organization Artist Trust, and I organized and managed the Seattle Deconstructed Art Fair in 2020 and 2021.
What inspired you to take the leap and start your own business?
After working in the industry for over a decade, I couldn’t really see myself doing anything else – it truly became my vocation. I absolutely love art and love helping people connect with it and bring it into their lives and homes. I had become established among artists and collectors in the region and felt that I had exhausted the growth possibilities that come with working for another dealer. So, it became the next logical step to have my name on the door and develop my own programming around artists that I could really get behind. I discovered my entrepreneurial side in the process.
What does your business offer, in terms of goods and services?
We represent about 30 artists that live/work or have connections to the Pacific Northwest. The gallery is most interested in showing works that are process oriented, conceptually driven, and adhere to the highest level of quality and craftsmanship.
What excites you about having joined the Association of Women Art Dealers?
Connecting with other woman art dealers who may have experienced the same pitfalls and fears that I have had in my career. It is a generally small industry that is often very opaque. Being able to connect with others who are willing to share advice, experience, and ideas for the future is incredible valuable.
What brings you joy in your work?
I get the most joy when I watch someone really fall in love with a piece of art. The love, the fear, the excitement when they make the decision to purchase a work of art is what really keeps me going.
A just for fun question: If you were a work of art what would you be and why?
I love this question! I ask people this a lot too! For someone who always wears black (industry hazard!) I think I would be a very colorful abstract painting that has swirling texture, seemingly messy with lots of paint, but contained in a very tight and clean-lined frame.