Portal: Governors Island
formerly known as Governors Island Art Fair
The 12th Annual Art Fair on Governors Island Organized by the Nonprofit 4heads, Inc.
On Saturday, August 31, 2019, 4heads will open Portal: Governors Island (formerly known as Governors Island Art Fair), featuring a diverse range of artists from across the U.S. and abroad. Installations, which span the spectrum of artistic genre and media, will be presented across eight of the historic homes on Colonels Row, with each artist installing in an individual room or connective space. Now in its 12th year, Portal: GI heralds the start of the fall visual arts season in New York, with a spirited atmosphere that encourages conversation between artists and visitors and challenges the established fair paradigm as one exclusively for art connoisseurs. Portal: GI will be open every Saturday and Sunday through from August 31 to September 29, 2019.
Governors Island Art Fair (now called Portal: GI) was first launched in 2008, and was one of the very first major art events to take place on Governors Island. As interest in the Island as a cultural destination has grown, in particular over the last several years, 4heads has remained steadfast in maintaining its presence, continuing to provide working artists with a place to show new and recent work and to build their network of support – both among peers and the public.
Each year, Portal: GI presents the work of up to 100 artists, selected through an open call and jurying process. For the 2019 edition, as with previous iterations, each artist will be given a full room or exterior green space – free of charge – to create an immersive installation or solo exhibition, to present their distinct vision as they see fit.
For the 2019 edition, Portal: Governors Island will feature a wide range of artists from across the globe, selected by 4heads Directors Nicole Laemmle, Lori Nelson, Jack Robinson, Simona Prives and Antony Zito from more than 800 proposals submitted through the nonprofit’s open call.
The selection includes artists new to the 4heads community, as well as those that have shown previously at either or both Governors Island Art Fair and Portal. Returning artists make up an important aspect of the 4heads mission, which is focused on both providing presentation opportunities for artists and supporting artists through the ongoing development and evolution of their careers. Portal: GI continues to offer fair participation to artists free of charge, with 70% of sales going directly to the artists.
August 31 – September 29, 2019
Saturdays and Sundays only, 11am – 6pm
Admission is Free
8-minute ferry ride to Governors Island:
• Adult – $3 (free before 11:30 AM)
• Seniors – $1 (free before 11:30 AM)
• Children under 13 – Free
• IDNYC Holders – Free
• Military Personnel – Free
Governors Island, Colonels Row
Bldg. 405, 406, 407 and 408
Just follow the signs marked Colonels Row to the buildings with the yellow and orange banners.
The Governors Island Ferry departs from the Battery Maritime Building located at 10 South Street, adjacent to the Staten Island Ferry in Lower Manhattan. The ferry terminal is accessible as follows:
By Subway – 1 to South Ferry station, 4, 5 to Bowling Green station or R to Whitehall St. station
By Bus – M6, M9, and M15
By Car – There is no public parking at the Governors Island ferry building. There is garage parking across the street from the Battery Maritime Building for a fee.
The ferry from Brooklyn leaves from Pier 6 in Brooklyn Bridge Park, located at the end of Atlantic Avenue (corner of Columbia Street).
By Subway: 2,3,4,5 to Borough Hall; A,C,F to Jay St./Borough Hall; or R to Court Street
By Bus: B63 to the terminus of Atlantic Avenue (at Columbia Street)
East River Ferry Service
NY Waterway’s East River Ferry offers frequent service to Governors Island on Saturdays and Sundays over the summer. For more information please visit eastriverferry.com.
4heads is a 501(c)3 nonprofit arts organization run by artists for artists. It was launched in New York in 2008, when Nicole Laemmle, Jack Robinson, and Antony Zito, who are working artists themselves, saw an opportunity to create a platform that would serve emerging artists and the local community through exhibitions, education programs, and artistic collaborations.
The organization’s DIY spirit helps catalyze the ongoing dialogue between artists and people from all walks of life. Its diverse slate of initiatives includes the Governors Island Art Fair, Portal art fair, arts-education initiatives for underserved communities, and a summer Artists in Residence program on Governors Island.
4heads is committed to shedding new light on hidden culture and bringing new life to unexpected and unique spaces across the city.
4heads is a certified 501(c)(3) non-profit arts organization.
Help us keep New York’s Largest Independent Exhibitions alive. We appreciate your support. Every dollar counts.
We have lots to do and could always use a hand – and a lot of it is educational and fun. Get involved with a diverse group of artists and volunteers working together to support local culture.
For questions about volunteering or interning, please email us.
4heads is on the look-out for partners interested in supporting an art fair unlike any other. The Governors Island Art Fair, Portal, and all other 4heads programs are managed entirely by artists with the mission of allowing other artists and galleries to present their work as they see fit. It is free to the public and receives thousands of visitors daily.
This is a unique opportunity to receive high visibility and to demonstrate cultural responsibility by supporting the local New York arts community.