Katrina Daniels (Photo: Courtesy photo)
As a surprise success and bright light in these dark times, Lansing Art Gallery & Education Center has produced a series of monthly outdoor pop-up shops — featuring work from Michigan artists and educational activities — in conjunction with #LiftUpLocal weeks organized by Downtown Lansing, Inc. (DLI).
Lansing Art Gallery & Education Center is a brick and mortar art center, which opened in 1965. Despite our closure to the public due to COVID-19, our team has been excited to work with DLI and downtown businesses in week-long events that celebrate local businesses and encourage people to come downtown. We did this with our team’s initial idea of an outdoor pop-up art event: To sell art and engage with the community on the sidewalk in front of the gallery.
What started out as an idea for a one-time, week-long event has developed into a robust series.
The first “Outdoor Pop-Up Art Shop” took place in July under a 10’ by 10’ tent with a curated collection of work by Michigan artists. Next, our hands-on activities offered the opportunity to make art. By the third month, we doubled our footprint with a larger tent, hands-on art activities and a series of featured artists. In addition, I was proud to make my personal record player and collection of vintage vinyls a new pop up tradition!
In my role as exhibitions and gallery sales director I coordinate exhibitions, create public art programming and oversee the gallery’s exceptional selection of contemporary craft and fine art (including unique opportunities to lease).
Each program includes a professional adjudication process, outreach initiatives and related communications. Due to COVID-19, we have also created online tours, a virtual ARTpath video and a series of outdoor events.
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Outdoor programs are one way we directly reach our community during COVID-19. Last month while working outside, I spoke with a new client who stopped by the gallery for the first time during our pop-up event.
As we make plans to reopen to the public later this fall, we’ll continue to innovate in arts programming designed to fulfill our mission: To provide public awareness, education and enjoyment of the visual arts by promoting the work of Michigan artists.
Working directly with our artists and our community is not only part of our mission, but it brings me great joy!
I felt rejuvenated when I returned to the gallery and was surrounded by our artists, artwork and community.
For those who feel safe and comfortable joining us outdoors, our team would love to have you stop by our next event. The fourth Outdoor Pop-Up Art Shop featuring the work of Michigan artists will be held Oct. 13-17, from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. each day.
We will be showcasing the following featured artists:
- Tuesday, Sonny House will be showcasing his handmade cutting boards and trivets.
- Wednesday, Jon Whitney will be sharing his functional pottery.
- Saturday, Regina Percini will be showing her screen-printed textile collection.
I invite you to stop by next week. I hope to see you there!
Katrina Daniels is exhibitions and gallery sales director for the Lansing Art Gallery & Education Center.
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