ECA Art News Briefs


Leigh Conner and Jamie Smith announce they are seeking the next DC home for CONNERSMITH gallery and the (e)merge art fair office. Recently, Smith and Conner accepted an offer from the Capital Fringe Festival to purchase their art space in NE Washington, DC. Smith and Conner moved their business from Dupont Circle NW to the Trinidad neighborhood in NE DC in 2007 when they purchased an auto body shop at 1358 and 1360 Florida Avenue, NE. The art entrepreneurs converted the two-story building and courtyard into an arts space at a time when the area was known for multiple homicides and police checkpoints.

In the renovated space, CONNERSMITH presented, free to the public, 56 solo exhibitions and 10 group shows of art by established, mid-career, and emerging artists, including Leo Villareal, Zoë Charlton, and Wilmer Wilson IV. A gallery hub formed with the arrival of neighboring galleries, demonstrating the transformative power of art within a resilient community. While based in Trinidad, CONNERSMITH supported its artists’ exhibitions in museums and biennials nationally and abroad and made over 32 presentations at international art fairs. In 2011, Smith and Conner launched (e)merge, DC’s own international contemporary art fair.