When one works and lives art you sometimes start to blend in so much you forget to look at the big picture. While at the same time if you are not part of the art community you may not know how this group of people in every area has a key role to play for the community and often the economy.
Art is Culture, weather the art is your area is Fine Art exclusively or Craft and Outsider Art exclusive or a wonderful blend of all, the culture of a town and the people in it is often expressed in the art. Does your area have a Community Theater? Do they hold Art festivals, Art or Studio Crawls? How many galleries or museums are in a quick drive from you?
These are all things that contribute a great deal to how a community, or neighborhood is seen.
An example of this is the area in Charlotte NC I spent a great deal of time in while in School at UNCC and after when working. This area was known a NODA or North Davidson. This area had once been Mill Worker homes, that later were left to fall into disrepair and gained a very bad reputation as a Slums. While a YMCA was in the neighborhood the mills had closed and the area became to poor to stay in repair. However this low rent district became a great place for poor artists, students and gallery owners to rent or buy to renovate.
As a group the artists began hosting monthly studio and gallery crawls with artists working out of doors and rental studios being available and showcasing upcoming artists. Close to downtown this area was great for University students and higher class alike however the draw to the area was the art. This became so great a draw new apartments were going up, and the mill houses started to increase in value, so fast artists were no longer able to afford to live or work in this district. Oddly they had worked themselves out of real estate.
Now these displaced artists and galleries have moved to other lower rent and “underserved” areas only to see the same effect happening again.
So while not everyone may be interested in the Trendy shops and galleries please remember these places and Artists have a key role if done right in building back rundown communities.
Just remember Trendy Sells, and Art is Trend.