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SOHO Comes to Babylon Village

The Christensen Gallery Opens It’s Doors!

Bringing a touch of ‘SoHo and Southampton’ to Babylon village, The Christensen Gallery, as aptly described by Mayor Mary Adams, is a unique addition to our community. Nestled next to Fitness Incentive at 127 Deer Park Ave, this is Babylon’s first-ever fine art gallery, which opened its doors on Friday, June 7th. 

Theresa Christensen, Fitness Incentive Trainer, Painter, and Founder of Christensen Gallery:

I’ve been an artist my entire life. As my mother always likes to remind me, I began to draw before I could walk. I graduated from SUNY New Paltz in 2000 with a degree in Visual Arts with a concentration in painting. Shortly after, I worked in advertising at J. Walter Thompson in Manhattan, trying to work my way up to the creative department.

NYC and Beyond

I had some wonderful experiences in the city, including participating in an art show at Madison Square Garden during the NYC International Independent Film Festival in early September of 2001. The show was followed by a concert by Michael Jackson. Not many artists can say that they opened for MJ himself! My work was viewed by celebrities such as Macauley Culkin, Shaggy, and Chris Tucker. However, the post-9/11 recession brought me back to Long Island, and I decided that I was going to leave advertising and pursue a career as a painter.

Back on the Island

At the time, there were very few spaces aside from the local museums to show artwork. I would do the local group art show at the Nathanial Conklin House in Babylon every October. My friend and mentor, Larry Nye, was the curator of the show, which was held during the annual Fall Festival. In between, I was knocking on the doors of restaurants, bars, and breweries, asking if my artist friends and I could hang our work on their walls. It took quite a bit of convincing, but eventually, they let me put the work up. I even got a bit of notoriety when I did a painting for the Howard Stern show in 2014. Howard spoke about the painting for several minutes on air.

The Murals and Mary Carroll’s

Some of the Guinness Murals in Mary Carroll’s

For the past 25 years, I have painted for several solo and group exhibitions and done some mural work. The most notable of these murals are the ones that I did for Mary Carroll’s in Babylon. “Guinness: The Journey” was the vision that owner Conor Hartnett had in mind for the large wall in the pub’s courtyard. What started as one mural in 2018 has grown to eight murals on the wall. I still have two more to complete later this year. 

Opportunity Calls

Back in April of this year, Conor called me. I thought he was calling to find out when the last two murals would be completed. Nothing could have prepared me for what would commence after this phone call. Conor asked me to meet him at the vacant storefront next to the pub. His tenant had recently moved out, and Conor pictured a fine art gallery in the space. We became business partners that afternoon, and The Christensen Gallery was born. Just two months later, we transformed an empty chiropractor’s office into a beautiful, modern art space. 

Living the Dream

The Christensen Gallery will feature a different artist every month, with an opening reception being held to celebrate the artist and the body of work being shown. Our first show, “Swim” by photographer Alexander Walsh, opens on July 5th. Alex and his father, Bill, are members of Fitness Incentive. Bill attends my cycle class regularly, and in 2018, he introduced his son to me so we could talk about art. We not only talked about art, but we collaborated on two shows together in 2019 and 2020.

Today, Alex owns the Altowa Image Gallery in Manhattan. He is excited to show his work in his hometown of Babylon. Please join us for Alex’s opening and our ribbon-cutting ceremony with the Chamber of Commerce on Friday, July 5th, at 5pm. We will also feature another very talented Fitness Incentive member, artist Sharon Pearsall, whose incredible oil paintings will be on display in August. You may visit the gallery on Thursday and Friday evenings from 4-8pm and on Saturdays beginning in July.

Gallery tours are available by appointment on Tuesdays and Wednesdays by calling or texting 631-972-3220

Call Christensen Gallery


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