In March of 2007 I signed an agreement to rent our current gallery space. It had previously been a candle shop and you could smell it half a block away. It’s true! I had almost no money to work with but with the help of a couple of friends, using lots of nails, paint and elbow grease I did my best to take this ugly room and turn it into a gallery, albeit a temporary one: I had been told the building would be torn down at the end of the summer.
I added a few walls and put a fresh coat of paint on everything. I also then painted the outside, changing it from white and green to red and white.
When the gallery opened on April 14th, 2007 it was quite the celebration. I couldn’t believe that I had my own gallery, even if it was only for a few months. Lots of photographers and friends came to the opening event. It wasn’t the fanciest looking place, but it worked.
The first summer was quite an adventure. I didn’t know how it would go and if I would be able to even pay the rent. In the end it went a lot better than I anticipated. Later that summer the big project was put on hold and I was told that I could remain in the gallery. The following year my building was sold to someone else. The new landlord wanted to upgrade the building. After a couple of years he did some renovations moving the front door, fixing the siding and replacing the green carpet. I also did a few things to improve the quality of the gallery on the inside. It then stayed like this for quite a few years.
In 2014 our great landlord took the lead and repainted the outside, giving the gallery a completely new look. Then this year, after celebrating 8 years in the gallery I decided that it was finally time to make it the way I wanted it. I shut the gallery for the entire month of April and made several changes to the interior. I took out the carpet and replaced it with a fabulous tile that actually looks like wood. I also added some additional wall space, brought in a fire place, had a barn-wood desk made, replaced all the trim and then gave it an updated paint job. The changes also made it possible to bring in some new and much larger artwork. I am very happy with the changes and think it captures the feel that I was aiming for.
It really has been a fun journey to see things develop over these years. Thank you to all of you who’ve helped me along the way! I can’t even imagine where things will be in another 8 years.