The Shoe FactoryArt Co-op announces their first event of 2012, “A New Year’s Painting Marathon!” on First Friday, January 6th from 6-9pm, and Second Saturday, January 14th from 12-4pm. Eight local artists will set up canvases and easels in the gallery, along with samples of their work, to do a live painting demonstration. Visitors will be able to wander through and observe the painters at work as each artist creates an acrylic painting or two. The performing painters are Shoe Factory members PhilBliss, Rina Miriam Drescher, Stephanie Cusenz Green, Susan Jenkins, ScottLamont, Doug Steward, Colleen Virdi, and Mollie Wolf.
The Open House is intended as a fundraiser to help support the gallery in continuing its grassroots efforts to provide more exhibit opportunities for local artists. Patrons will be able to bid on or purchase original artwork, learn about becoming a member of the gallery, and get to know the evening’s painting participants and their approach to creating art. Information will also be available about new drawing and painting classes that will be offered at The Shoe Factory.
In its short existence, The Shoe Factory Art Co-op has shown the work of over 200 regional artists as well as artists from out of state. After twelve art exhibits of varying themes, the gallery is gaining in popularity with local artists and art lovers. “Since our first show in November 2010, we’ve had nothing but positive feedback from the community”, says gallery director Beth Brown. “This kind of exhibit space is sorely needed for the many artists who inhabit Rochester. There are not that many galleries in the area to represent artists and show their work. Our patrons take a lot of pleasure in viewing and purchasing local art.” Art mediums that have been shown in the gallery have included paintings, photography, sculpture, mixed media, fiber arts, glass, furniture, metalwork, and jewelry.
In the Main Gallery, The Shoe Factory rotates a schedule of open juried “Call for Artists” group shows and individual artist solo exhibits. Across the hall, the Co-op’s “House Artists Gallery” features the work of 18 local artists who rent their own display spaces and help out as members. The gallery has recently acquired a third studio in which they plan to develop new art, video, and photography related activities. The fledgling gallery has had a good start and hopes to continue to grow and develop as an arts destination in Rochester’s Neighborhood of the Arts.
The Shoe Factory Art Co-op is located at 250 N. Goodman St. on the second floor of a four story brick building that used to belong to E.P. Reed & Co., designer of women’s shoes. The former Reed factory, built in 1906, was a key player in Rochester’ rich shoe manufacturing history. Anderson Arts Building, as the building is now known, is owned by Arthur Goldfeder, original owner of Fabrics and Findings. Most of the building is currently rented as art and photography studios, but other tenants include City Newspaper, Good Luck Restaurant, Booksmart Studio, House Digital, and Anderson Alley Artists.
The Shoe Factory Art Co-op’s opening night of “A New Year’s Painting Marathon!” will fall on January’s FirstFriday, a citywide gallery night that encourages collaboration between non-profit, university, and commercial art venues. The concept of First Friday was started by RochesterContemporary Art Center to help coordinate art events around town into one monthly community night that encourages the public to venture out and experience art in Rochester.
Address: The Shoe Factory Art Co-op, 250 N. Goodman St., Studios 212, 212A, 215, Rochester, NY 14607
New Year Gallery hours: Wednesdays 12-5pm, First Fridays 6-9pm, and Second Saturdays 12-4pm
Call or email for more information about exhibits, art classes, becoming a member, and how to enter art shows, or visit their website.