After almost 20 years, Gulfport’s Art Walk has come full circle.
The twice monthly event started as a collection of fine artists displaying their work along Beach Boulevard. Over the years, the type of people displaying their work at Art Walks changed. But this past Friday night, in response to artist Owen Pach’s passion and a community that supported the change, Gulfport celebrated its first Fine Arts Friday.
Between 28th and 29th Avenues South, 14 fine artists (including Pach) sold their art. McCue estimates that ¾ of the artists also offered demonstrations of their art.
“It was great; the streets were packed. Mary Joyner and Owen [Pach] have really put this thing together. It was Owen’s passion and really stepped in to organize the operation. They made this happen,” McCue said.
“I was really proud, for one of the first times in a long time to see a really great mix of handmade American work,” Merchant’s Association President Mike McCue said of the event. McCue, the former owner of Domain and manager of the Domain galery, started working with Art Walk 12 years ago.
How did the artists do?
“The artists I talked to were very happy,” McCue said.
McCue said Fine Arts Fridays will continue as long as the community continues to offer economic and moral support. He said 75% of the artists sold some of their work, so he hopes to see the fine arts back in Art Walk for a long time to come.
“It was a special thing. It was a great night,” he said. “A Kumbaya night.”