Skip to content

The Golden Colonel

Flux Factory
404A Colonels Row, Governors Island
July 12 – August 11, 2024 

As part of its fourth seasonal residency on Governors Island, Flux Factory presents the group exhibition, The Golden Colonel, a speculative retirement home for artists, open from July 12 – August 11, 2024.

Curated by artists Heather Kapplow and Itala Aguilera, with assistance from Shinobu Akimoto, co-director of Residency for Artists on Hiatus, The Golden Colonel features works in all the mediums by John AllenSydni Ann BakerMargaret BellafioreNoémie Jennifer BonnetBen GaladayCarrie HawksLi-Ming HuShushanik KarapetyanAlix Lambert (in collaboration with Itala Aguilera), Marcel MarcelNancy NowacekMoses RosMark ShawWalker TuftsYolanda He YangSilvana Zuanetti, and an anonymous submitter using the moniker “Older Artist.”

There is an unspoken understanding that because being an artist is not a “real” job, but something more like a calling, and because artists often don’t earn enough money to save for old age, they can’t retire. They just make art until they die. From July 12 through August 11, 2024, The Golden Colonel explores some of the complexities of artists considering the same choice to retire from their practices as everyone else.

Most people wait until they retire to explore their creativity. The Golden Colonel is a place for people who have already done that. So what comes next? We’ve gathered work by artists ranging in age from their early 20s to their early 80s to reflect on what might lie beyond artmaking, or whether it’s even possible to stop making art.

The exhibition takes place at 404A Colonels Row* from July 12 through August 11, 2024. Gallery hours are 12-5, Friday through Sunday, and by appointment.


You Only Get One Body! (Elder Sunbathing–But Everyone is Welcome!)
July 7, 12-5pm, weather permitting
404A Colonels Row, Governors Island NYC

A very (literally!) laid back sunbathing event about elder-visibility and allyship.

Bring your grandparents, parents or yourself; a blanket; some sunscreen; and water, and come celebrate the anniversary of the 1992 court ruling that allows chests and breasts equal access to the light of day in the state of New York, while also celebrating bodies of all ages, shapes, sizes and genders. This is a preview event for The Golden Colonel, a speculative retirement home for artists on Governors Island that will open on July 13, 2024. The Golden Colonel will still be under construction, so not yet open to the public, but July 7 is an official holiday for the organization, celebrated annually with elder- (and ally-) optionally topless sunbathing. We invite you to join us to help kick off the first annual You Only Get One Body! 

**Accessible Event.

Opening Reception with Ribbon Cutting by Martha Wilson
July 13, 12-6pm
404A Colonels Row, Governors Island NYC

Please attend the grand opening of The Golden Colonel, featuring a ribbon cutting by pioneering feminist artist and Founding Director Emerita of Franklin Furnace, Martha WIlson. Take a tour of the facility, meet some residents, and try out some of our activities! On this date you’ll have the opportunity to experience Bed Piece by Mark Shaw after the ribbon cutting, and at 4pm, a Remembering/Forgetting Spellcasting Ceremony** by Carrie Hawks.

**Accessible Event.

The Third Saturday
July 20, 12-6pm
404A Colonels Row, Governors Island NYC

We no longer remember what it commemorates, but The Third Saturday is a holiday at The Golden Colonel! We’ll celebrate it with a reprise of Bed Piece by Mark Shaw, an opportunity to play Monster Cards by Ben Galady, and will also offer a group therapy session “for dying artists”

called The Last Painting** led by artist and psychotherapist Shushanik Karapetyan.

**Accessible Event.

Press Contact: Meghana Karnik

*Note that the building has stairs at its entryway and is not wheelchair accessible. Activities that occur outside are fully accessible and are identified here with two asterisks.

Back To Top