Avital’s Gallery 336 hopes to create a museum experience in a casual setting
Walking through the door, visitors are welcomed by an array of brightly colored paintings depicting scenes of landscapes and religious ceremonies. A little further down the narrow hallway, dotted with contemporary paintings, ceramics and glassware by local artists, easels and sketch pads lined up against a set of collages made by the owner are visible. And as attendees walk a little further, they will see the namesake owner at work, finalizing her projects and cleaning the gallery, immediately stopping her work to give guests a tremendous greeting.
On Saturday, Jan. 14, Avital’s Gallery 336, owned by husband and wife Avital and Peter Kornblum, opened to the public, showcasing the works of both local and international artists. Great Neck residents themselves, the Kornblums hope to attract art enthusiasts to not only visit the gallery, but also participate in workshops and
become involved in the art community.
“There are a lot of high-end galleries in this area, but our goal is to display art in a casual, friendly setting,” Avital said. “We hope to attract both local artists and those with a passion for art to come view the works of accomplished artists, contribute pieces to this gallery and chat with us about projects and suggestions.”
Avital’s passion for art began as a student in Israel while studying nursing at Hadassah College in Jerusalem. Always interested in the creative arts, Avital received her nursing degree and moved to the United States, finding both a nursing position at a local hospital and positions at art galleries in Greenport, NY; New Haven, CT; and nearby Port Washington. With the help of colleague Mario Tucci, an accomplished local artist, Avital opened this gallery where she could showcase her own collages and her personal art collection, as well as Tucci’s compositions and local art.
“The art in this gallery is extremely diverse and distinctive because so many genres of art are represented,” Peter Kornblum said. “For example, on one wall, we have works by Adina Gross, an Israeli artist who painted many Israeli folk scenes, and on another wall, we have abstract art and modern portraiture.”
In order to expand the diversity of the art represented, the Kornblums look to have revolving exhibitions, exposing the works of local and international artists. Like a museum, the gallery looks to feature as many styles of art as possible within the extremely small space.
In addition to showcasing as many artists as possible, Avital hopes to share her artistic abilities with others through classes; once settled into the new space, she envisions having easels set up throughout the gallery with paintbrushes lining the sink and paints filling the cabinets. While still uncertain about the type of classes she will instruct, Avital hinted that they will be focused primarily on her personal favorites: collage making and painting with acrylics.
But with a successful first week in business, attracting numerous artists and curious locals, the gallery’s current main goal is to establish a connection with every art lover and potential client who walks through the front door.
“I want this gallery to be a place where people can go to socialize and meet with local artists,” Avital said. “Once you walk through the door, you should feel like you are guests in our house.”