Today I got the keys to my new downtown store... MY NEW DOWNTOWN STORE!!!
It's still empty as of today, but I have enough love to fill it up. And I hope to have enough art to fill it up soon too.
About 3 weeks ago I wrote here and on Facebook about my need to find my next "something".
Almost immediately a friend wrote me asking for help with a project run by the Missoula Cultural Council called the Missoula Storefront Art Project. It is intended to put life back into the windows of storefronts left empty by business that have gone under due to economic distress. This is to be done by having local artists install creative displays in shop fronts. This is intended to make the area look more upbeat and less deserted. More of a desirable place for new businesses to open. I was asked to organize the info from the artists with examples of what they planned to do. So far none of the buildings had art in the windows. I thought this was a wonderful thing to put my attention and focus on when I needed a good challenge.
That same week, maybe a day later, Michael, my husband was searching studio spaces downtown. No real reason, just for kicks. I have a small space for my quilting and art-making, he has the bedroom for his circuit bending and electronic music gear... he just thought it would be fun to have a place to go that wasn't "here" to be creative.
There were a few teeny tiny spaces available. Not much spectacular. But one really stood out. It was a huge basement studio with room for the both of us and attached storefront above. Both for rent. Both for not much more than the little studios he'd seen. Michael casually showed me the Craigslist ad. I don't think he was really serious, but for the price, the studio alone was worth looking into.
The first thing I thought was, rent the space for the studio below and just allow the shop space to be used for the Storefront Art Project. I didn't need it, but they did. It would be a good start to the program.
But it was nagging at me. The more I thought about it, the more I began to see the potential. What if I really could get into a new line of business? Could I be a successful art gallery owner? I ruminated over it for a couple of weeks before deciding that, yes, I would try this! The lease is only for 3 months because the last person defaulted. I could see what happens in 3 months and go from there.
I went and looked at the space last Thursday. It was in rough shape downstairs, but upstairs in the shop it was nice. Really all it needs is some paint and good light. I wanted it. BAD. I brought her a deposit the next day and today I get the keys. This is happening very fast.
Tomorrow I meet up with the first Storefront Art Project artist. I really can't believe this is happening. I must be out of my mind. I've already filed for my licensing and have started buying fixtures. THIS is what happens when you ask the universe for a challenge.