Baton Rouge artist and art patron Mark Biletnikoff announced today that he’ll close his gallery at 7809 Jefferson Hwy in the Settlement at Bocage on June 1.
Biletnikoff says in a statement that he’s closing the physical location of The Biletnikoff Gallery—in Suite A1—to focus on his N the Art Space complex and other initiatives he has in the pipeline.
“The gallery website will remain and will go through a few changes soon to evolve for future developments,” he says. “It is not the last time you will hear from us, but this location has served its main purpose.”
The 1,200-square-foot gallery showcases original fine and community art from local painters, photographers, sculptors and other artists. The gallery has shown the works of emerging and professional artists, as well as graduating LSU BFA seniors, the statement says.
In 2015, Biletnikoff announced he was opening the gallery in his N the Art Space—a 14,000-square-foot education art complex he owns that spans four buildings—to fill a void in the community and create a space for local artists to display their work.
“As an educated professional, I understand the feasibility of owning a retail gallery designated solely for the sale of artwork,” he says. “Advice was given, naysayers shook their heads and others just remained silent in dismay as I opened the doors to the new venue for local art. Profitability was not number one on the list.”
Biletnikoff says he’s accomplished everything he wanted by opening the gallery’s physical location.
“During turbulent times, art is not the first thing on the general population’s list. Discovering arts ability to express emotions and also help heal the soul should provide a possible therapy for those in need of assistance,” he says. “I encourage the community to search out art and its benefits. I am proud of Biletnikoff Gallery and its accomplishments, but it is time to evolve to the next act.”