A Statement from The Curator of The Saratoga Collection -Terrence Sanders
The "Saratoga Building" is on the corner of Tulane and Loyola. It is also a bus stop where a majority of African Americans sit and wait for a city bus to take them home. Every time I pass this particular bus stop I feel tremendous sadness and despair. No one ever talks to each other and no one ever smiles. One day I had a vision to paint an anagram on the seven boarded up windows of the Saratoga Building. It was my belief that an anagram would get people talking, then after they deciphered the statement: YOU ARE THE MASTERPIECE OF YOUR LIFE, they would begin to believe the message. After I presented Marcel Wisznia, the owner of the Saratoga, with the concept, he approved and I created the piece. When it was completed, I sat across the street and watched the piece come to life. It brought tears to my eyes as I watched people talk with one another, attempting to decipher the anagram and learning to love themselves and keep hope and their respective dreams alive.
On a Sunday afternoon in 2009, Marcel and I were walking toward the Superdome to watch the New Orleans Saints play the New York Giants. On the walk over we passed the Saratoga Building. After the success of the anagram, I pitched Marcel the concept of collecting artwork from 41 emerging and mid-career artists who live and work in New Orleans. I urged him to consider that this was a pinnacle moment for artists in New Orleans and that we would one day be the ones who recognized the potential and value of a coherent and concise collection. The artwork being created in New Orleans post-Katrina is forever changing the artistic landscape of a city that once was viewed as merely representational and traditional. Marcel loved the idea and asked me to prepare a proposal with a list of artists. For me, this was a way of documenting the burgeoning art scene in New Orleans' St. Claude and Bywater arts districts. The Saratoga Collection features works in every medium, including mixed media, video, representational and figurative painting, photography, installation, and sculpture. This collection of 41 artists not only defines a specific era of this city, but more importantly, it celebrates the artists who made the conscious decision to live and work in New Orleans post-Katrina, when all hinged on uncertainty.
The artists in the Saratoga Collection are relevant and ready to be included in the worldwide dialogue of what constitutes contemporary art. They are each important and should be viewed with the highest regard. We won't have to go to NYC or LA to prove ourselves; the art world is on its way to us! Our mission stays the same: to create work that articulates the human condition which evokes emotion and creates a catalyst for change.
The Saratoga Collection offers a peek into the world of the new New Orleans contemporary art movement. It serves as an overview of the work being created by artists with a by-any-means-necessary attitude and impeccable work ethic. New Orleans is and always will be a wondrous, turbulent, and beautiful city, that produces artists and artwork of the highest caliber, that embody compassion, fearlessness, and humanity.
Marcel Wisznia and his team of award winning architects have cleverly transformed a mid-20th century minimalist office building into 155 apartments including 2 rooftop penthouses each with its own private patio and spa.
Downtown New Orleans is the fastest growing neighborhood in the City.
The Saratoga located at 212 Loyola on the corner of Tulane and Loyola Avenue is perfectly situated on the Loyola streetcar line and is walking distance to the Medical and Bio Districts, the Superdome and New Orleans Arena, a full service supermarket, the Central Business District, a revitalized Theater District, and the French Quarter.
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