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Bravo shifts from 'Real Housewives' to 'Gallery Girls'

June 28, 2012|By Chris Barton
  • A scene from Season 2 of Bravo series "Work of Art: The Next Great Artist."
A scene from Season 2 of Bravo series "Work of Art: The Next Great Artist." (Bravo )

With what sounds like a laboratory-developed hybrid of "Real Housewives," "NYC Prep" and HBO's "Girls," unscripted-drama farm Bravo is looking toward the tributaries of the New York City art world with its summer series "Gallery Girls."

"The show follows the lives of seven dynamic and ambitious young women in New York City who tackle the cutthroat environment of the art world while vying for their dream jobs," says the network's news release, which also included a few nods toward the septet's television-ready personalities broken into short, easily digestible paragraphs.

For instance, one cast member is a former gallery assistant living in Brooklyn "learning to live stress-free," while another resides in Manhattan and "enjoys partying and living it up in the city." Tension!

While the show is sure to include all the backbiting and love-to-hate behavior that has become something of the network's stock in trade, it also features nods to the city's gallery scene, with some of its cast having experience with Eli Klein Fine Art, Christie's, the David Zwirner Gallery and others. Two of the women on the show are also running a "hip" boutique gallery on the Lower East Side, which will surely be operated with minimal conflict and disagreements. 

The show marks Bravo's second, albeit less direct, attempt at covering the East Coast art world after two seasons of the "Top Chef"-styled competition "Work of Art," which featured artists competing for cash and a Brooklyn Museum exhibition, selected by judges that included New York magazine critic Jerry Saltz. A third season has yet to be announced.

Whether "Gallery Girls" can compete with Lena Dunham's "Girls" for its zeitgeisty attempt to capture urban twentysomething angst and ambition remains to be seen. Regardless, it's about time more outlets started shining a light on young New Yorkers trying to make it happen -- they've always been an underexposed lot. "Gallery Girls" is to premiere at 10 p.m. on Aug. 13. 

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