Art Gallery: Gallery1988

One of the greatest films of all time, Ghostbusters, is celebrating its 30th anniversary in 2014. To help celebrate this monumental occasion, Gallery1988 has put together a traveling art show. The show will feature original artwork, limited edition prints and apparel.

Jensen Karp is co-owner and co-curator of Gallery1988—he shares those duties with Katie Sutton. They opened the first location 10 years ago. Gallery1988 is known for its pop cultured themed shows that focus on huge franchises from the film and television worlds.

The traveling Ghostbusters 30th anniversary show kicks off April 19th in New York before heading to Los Angeles, Chicago and San Diego’s Comic Con.  We talked to Jensen about his job, working with huge pop culture properties and the extremely underrated Ghostbusters 2.

 What is the best part of your job?

Being able to employ artists, not just by selling their work off the walls, but also to connect them with movie studios and TV production companies. That has been the most positive aspect of this experience for me. Being able to pay artists above and beyond anything they were expecting, while building meaningful relationships. You can only do that by working at Gallery1988.

Do you have an all time favorite Gallery1988 show?

Two shows that always stick out in mind are from the first 5 years. One was a show called “Remixing the Magic.” We were hired by the Walt Disney Company to get artists to create paintings based on ANYTHING from their library. The line-up for that show was incredible and Disney had NO creative control over what was in the show. The exhibit included a Song of the South piece. That was a once in a lifetime experience and people who’ve tried to replicate that show have seen the restrictions that usually come with an undertaking like that. We were very lucky.

The other show that stands out was our Lost exhibit with ABC Television. We had created a marketing campaign with the creators of the show for their final season. We sold out of every print from it, and then had an art show at the gallery of all new work. It was an electric night and really spawned much of what you see from new pop culture galleries and art sales over the past few years in our world.

What can fans expect from the Ghostbusters show?

An all out artistic celebration of one of the greatest movies of all-time! We have 70 artists who have all created some of their best work for this traveling exhibit. We have so much of the film included. There are paintings with the boys in them and we have pieces with more obscure references. We even have 4 companies creating limited edition t-shirts for the tour. I really can not wait for fans of the movie to see what we have.

Why did you decide to feature Ghostbusters and their 30th anniversary in your gallery?

We had worked with Sony on our Breaking Bad marketing campaign and when we did a follow up meeting, they asked what our dream project would be. I knew the 30th anniversary of Ghostbusters was coming up, and they basically said yes on the spot. It’s a total no-brainer. As a child I was obsessed with the film, so it only makes sense we’re the place to throw this.

What kinds of complications arise when putting together a gallery around such an iconic property?

Well, tons of things. From locations in every city to making sure artists are participating. We also want to make sure we do the property a service through this tribute. Working with the studio hand in hand is key. Sometimes that can take some back and forth. But luckily, Sony has been incredible, as have the stars of the movie with their own approvals and positive feedback.

How closely do you work with the artists who create the pieces featured in your various gallery programs, including the upcoming Ghostbusters’ show?

 We work very closely with them. Being ten years old at this point, it gives us the opportunity to build a strong roster of artists we can depend on to create great work. So we’re always in contact and seeing sketches. It’s a fun part of the process.

I personally think Ghostbusters 2 gets a bad rap. Are you a fan of the often-maligned sequel?

I LOVE Ghostbuster 2! I’m hoping it gets a Blu-ray release soon. It’s definitely underrated and I always appreciate the Bobby Brown cameo.

Why do you think the Ghostbusters’ franchise has been able to stay relevant for over 30 years now?

I’ve read Dan Akroyd say that it’s a movie about three guys starting a business—and that rings so true. Sure, there are ghosts and insane things that happen, but at it’s core it has incredible heart and is genuinely about friendship. Movies like that, ones that have layers, last the test of time.

Is there anything else fans should know about the Ghostbusters’ 30th anniversary tour?

A majority of the work from the show will only be available by visiting the galleries, but special 30th Anniversary prints will be available in limited amounts on

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