It was a beautiful night. Enough dampness in the air to remind us we live in a desert and are grateful for every drop of moisture. Not so cold, I saw a gent in shorts. There were happy bustling crowds, many beautiful outfits and some interesting shoes.
was jammed with the air guitar contest, but I could not bear the loudness. Stores and galleries had crowds from all over the Northeast: Echo Park and Silver Lake, of course, but also Hollywood, Downtown, NoHo and Burbank.
Dogs, and children, cheerful bicyclistas.
There was a semi-reggae band on the street in front of Hummingbird, food trucks and a truck called Tin-Box Curios. The York was crammed, , not as much, although there seemed to be plenty of mocha–frappuccinos-to-go happening, and at least one iced chaichata. The sidewalks were newly washed--thank you, CD 14.
Further down the pike, a peek into Maximilliano’s showed a busy scene.
Highland Park's corner of NELA Gallery Night is thriving, pulsing and delightful. In our little village inside the big city, people talk to each other on the street. Everyone I asked had a different reason for coming, but they were also all the same. This is fun.
Easily two-thirds of the people I asked had been to a gallery, or store-with-art. I asked if they would be interested in more, would they like to see working artist’s studios? Oh yes. Did you know there are galleries and studios in Glassell, and Cypress? No, cool. Have you been to Figueroa? Less than half said yes, if it were easier to travel to Figueroa, Eagle Rock, and Colorado would you go? Oh yeah.
I was in the room when Brian Mallman, progenitor of our NELA Art's Second Saturday Gallery Night, outlined his vision of the future . He saw us moving beyond a single night, avoiding the overblown Party Night syndrome of the Downtown Walk. He saw Highland Park as an everyday art destination. He saw recognition of living, working artists all over our little corner of heaven. He saw collectors and curators coming here to see what is new and exciting, dare I say hip?
Brian’s choice to grow and develop this vision is Cathi Milligan. She will need ideas, and energy, help to keep the party truly community and support to help it flower. Businesses, residents, politicians, and certainly artists all understand the value of having flourishing art here. There are artists of all kinds working in their studios all over the Northeast. Let’s see our artists step out from behind their hidden storefronts on York and Monte Vista. This is the place to be. Come out.