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Margery E. Goldberg
|Occupation||Artist and Art Gallery Curator|
Margery E. Goldberg (born 1950) is an American artist, art curator, city arts commissioner, and activist. She is best known as the founder and curator of Zenith Gallery in Washington, D.C., which exhibits contemporary art in all media, and represents over 100 emerging to mid-career and established artists.
Goldberg was born in 1950 in Rochester, NY. She started sculpting in clay at the age of 10 and took classes at the Rochester Memorial Art Gallery during elementary and high school. Despite her aptitude for handiwork, she pursued art training during high school. Her father was a printer and advertiser, so Goldberg grew up around business operations.
Goldberg attended George Washington University from 1968 to 1972, earning a Bachelor of Arts degree in Fine Arts. From 1972 to 1977, she operated a workshop in a 100-year-old hayloft on Washington, D.C.'s K Street, where she built commissions and held art shows.
After Goldberg's K Street studio burned down in 1977, she and two friends bought a 50,000 ft2 space at 15th Street and Rhode Island Avenue in Washington, D.C. It was this space, which included six townhouses, two large buildings, and multiple carriage houses, that would in 1978 become Zenith Gallery. Goldberg renovated some of the houses and rented rooms to artists. About half of Goldberg's artist-tenants also worked in studios at Zenith Gallery. In 1987, Goldberg opened a second location of Zenith Gallery in Washington, D.C. on 7th street's Gallery Row, which remained open until 2009. Following the closure of the Zenith Gallery location at Rhode Island Avenue in December 1987, Goldberg focused on creating non-commissioned pieces that were later offered for sale. According to Goldberg:
"How do you put creativity in a budget? I'd rather create the piece, and then if someone wants to come along and buy it, wonderful. Commissions pay the bills, but that's about all they do."
The gallery is currently located at 1429 Iris Street NW, Washington DC. Goldberg also programs art for the lobby at 1111 Pennsylvania Ave. NW.
In 1980, Goldberg co-founded the Arts and Entertainment News Service, which videotaped and documented more than 30 arts, music, and cultural events for WETA-TV public television. Today, those videos serve as an archive of the Washington, D.C. art scene.
As an activist and arts advocate, Goldberg founded the Zenith Community Arts Foundation in 2000, a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization dedicated to initiatives and projects that benefit artists and the overall Washington, D.C. community. In 1998 and 2007, Goldberg served on Washington D.C.'s Downtown Arts Development Task Force. From 1992 to 1997, Goldberg was a commissioner of the DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities, and was treasurer of the Commission's executive committee for two of those years.