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Pat Hearn

WHEN I WANDERED into the Pat Hearn Gallery at the corner of Sixth Street and Avenue B for the first time in the fall of 1984, two things called me hack from the late-in-a-long-afternoon-of-gallery-rounds torpor I was just slipping into. The first was the decor, heretical by SoHo-white-cube standards—or for that matter, by East Village–storefront-shabby ones. In place of sealed hardwood, a grouted mosaic of tiny tiles glistened underfoot like a model-home bathroom; add a kidney-curved built-in planter and the scene seemed to promise a house-proud hostess proffering an artfully arranged platter of dip ‘n’ dunks. The second were the paintings, which included—could it really he?—three Bridget Rileys and a pair of terrific little Myron Stouts.

Well, the hostess did appear—on cue, and in the person of Pat Hearn, the gallery's proprietress and lead singer in the band Wild & Wonderful, shod in

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