Last month’s unprecedented rainstorm wreaked havoc on Long Island and the Art League of Long Island was not spared from the wrath of Mother Nature. The heavy rains on the night of September 29 led to extensive rain damage within the Art League of Long Island’s two-story art center, located at 107 East Deer Park Road in Dix Hills.
As a result, the organization has been compelled to temporarily close its doors, including all exhibits, programs, and classes, for an estimated duration of four weeks or more, according to Marianne Della Croce, the non-profit’s Executive Director. The rainstorm caused substantial damage to the gallery, studios, hallways, and office space, resulting in significant harm to floors and walls, while only minimal damage was incurred by two wall murals created by our Resident Artists Program.
In response, the Art League promptly engaged the services of ServePro to commence the abatement process, which was successfully completed in under two weeks. Following this phase, the Art League will embark on the reconstruction of its facility, “presenting a unique opportunity to deliver a fresh and enhanced Art League experience to the vibrant community of Long Island upon reopening,” said Della Croce.
The Art League is also working with other local nonprofits and community partners to temporarily host some of our upcoming events and classes. The Executive Director and Education & Program Manager, Ersule Metelus, have spent the last week visiting these alternate sites to determine the best fit for each one of our unique programs.
The Long Island Craft Guild, originally scheduled to host a month-long exhibition at the Art League titled “Seeing the Other,” featuring local artists’ work, had to cancel its opening reception planned for the day after the storm. In response to the unforeseen circumstances, the Craft Guild artists have retrieved their artworks, including glass mosaics, sculptures, wood designs, and pottery, all of which fortunately remained unscathed. The Jeanie Tengelsen Gallery at the Art League of Long Island is a highly sought-after exhibition space, often reserved a year in advance. The Art League has offered the group gallery space for the year 2025, allowing them ample time to determine their way forward.
Furthermore, the Latin Heritage Month Celebration, co-hosted by the Art League and Colored Colors and sponsored by Legislator Manuel Esteban, has been rescheduled for Saturday, November 4, 2023. This event promises to be a vibrant and culturally enriching experience for all attendees, featuring music, dancing, delectable Latin cuisine, and a variety of vendors offering unique cultural products and crafts. The event’s headlining band, Bachatu, will serenade the audience with captivating rhythms. Additionally, children will have the opportunity to participate in a Huichol Mexican Yarn Painting project, providing a hands-on cultural experience.
Their Ceramics Department Fundraiser, “Made with Mud, Kissed by Fire” which was scheduled for October 21st has been postponed to January 27, 2024. The Art League of Long Island looks to bring you ceramic entertainment, raffles, an auction, and hors-d’oeuvres for you to enjoy while helping support one of their dynamic departments. Your ticket to the event entitles you to take home one bowl made by our instructors, staff, and long-term students. Please continue to purchase tickets to this lively event on our website.
The financial implications of the flooding damage are substantial for the Art League of Long Island, an educational center dedicated to the visual arts since its establishment in 1955. While insurance coverage will alleviate a portion of the repair expenses, the Art League seeks the support of the local community during this challenging time.
The Art League of Long Island has faced significant operational challenges before. The non-profit was forced to put its headquarters on the market due to the closure necessitated by the COVID-19 pandemic in March 2020. Revenues, primarily derived from tuition, along with donations, memberships, exhibition, and gallery rentals, quickly dwindled. Nonetheless, a local fundraising campaign generated over $100,000 in donations, which aided in steering the Art League away from financial turmoil. Marianne Della Croce remains hopeful that the community will rally around the Art League once again, ensuring its resilience as it progresses toward its 70th Anniversary in less than two years.
About Art League of Long Island: The Art League of Long Island, founded in 1955, is a 501c non-profit visual arts organization committed to enriching the community through fine arts education and exhibitions. Located in Dix Hills, New York, the Art League serves as a hub for artistic expression and cultural appreciation, providing a wide range of classes, workshops, exhibitions, and events for artists and art enthusiasts of all ages.