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gottamakeart's avatar

"Phantom Galleries" a temporary solution to unsightly empty storefronts and a forum in which artists receive exposure. Your thoughts?

Asked by gottamakeart (1323points) July 25th, 2011

“Phantom Galleries” is a concept that has been used in many communities affected by Economic Downturn, in which normally vacant empty store windows are used to display work by Local Artists. Thereby counter-acting the “ghost-town” look created by a number of un-used business locations and providing exposure for artists hoping to have more people SEE their work- and possibly make some sales. Also, it can make the property itself stand out more to potential clients.

Does YOUR community already have something like this? OR- can you see such a program being implemented where you live?

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13 Answers

marinelife's avatar

I have not seen such a program implemented, but I would like to.

ANef_is_Enuf's avatar

Yep, I’ve been seeing it around here for years, and I really like it. I didn’t realise that’s what it was called, but I think it’s a great idea.

cookieman's avatar

I offered this solution to a couple of empty businesses in the town where I work. We were going to make a display promoting local agriculture, our farm and the local farmers markets.

The landlord turned us down flat. Two years later the space is still empty.

I think it’s a wonderful idea. I wish more building owners would do it. Sadly, there’s a lot of vacant space ‘round here.

GracieT's avatar

Like @cprevite I live in an area with far too many empty spaces. I am completely in favor of the idea. In a couple of these areas other stores
have placed examples of the
wares they offered. Using the space instead to highlight the talents of local artists is a much better idea.

Fly's avatar

We have something similar to this in our town. There is one building with an empty display that kids from a local school get to help make a display for, usually season and/or holiday-themed. It’s not a whole program like you described, but then again, we also have very few vacant business buildings. If there were more vacant storefronts, I could easily see such a program being implemented as it is a very artsy town.

YoBob's avatar

Sounds like a brilliant idea.

I haven’t seen it done around here. However, our fair city does not seem to have a problem with empty store fronts.

SpatzieLover's avatar

Our village could really use it, but I haven’t seen it implemented yet :(

TexasDude's avatar

There are one or two store fronts like this in my city. I’ve walked in on a few interesting mini exhibitions in them before.

YARNLADY's avatar

I like the idea, but there is a lot of controversy in the area that could use it most, between building owners and the city planners. It seems they fight over every little thing, from who cleans the sidewalk in front of the store to who decides whether the utilities are turned on or not.

Kardamom's avatar

It sounds like a great idea, but who pays for the lights and the electricity? Surely the artists couldn’t afford that, that’s why they’re selling their wares. The landlords probably wouldn’t agree to pay for the utilities, because they’d be shelling out money and not getting anything out of it.

flutherother's avatar

They have been doing this in Dumbarton recently.

Neizvestnaya's avatar

I’ve seen storefronts I suspected of that in San Francisco along the embarcadero where there used to be so many neat private shops that gave way to common chain stores and now look empty but for some sculpture and hangings.

I like the idea of something to see while the property managers wait on tenants but who pays for the insurance on the building to let the public in to see the things up close or to buy them?

gottamakeart's avatar

I’ve personally seen this in Rutland, VT. it goes by the name “Phantom Galleries” much like in other communities-and it works.

Lights aren’t really necessary-neither is letting people in since these displays are in the front windows and can be seen just fine in the daylight. The artist’s contact info is on a card in the display window itself.

As for any insurance- the artist can simply sign a waiver,unless they or the building owner has arranged something-(some more-established artists even have their own insurance) and/or perhaps only displaying less-valuable works or prints, neatly taking care of that issue.

The concept is pretty straight forward- given how co-operative each building owner is. So, if any of them want to be a greedy douchebag and get bogged down in silly details to make $ off local artists instead of doing something for their community -and make their property appear more desirable to potential renters/buyers – then that’s their loss.

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