Gainesville’s Artisans’ Guild Gallery will be hosting its first ever outdoor art market, featuring local art vendors presenting and their selling artwork.
The first art market will take place Oct. 31, from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., and will continue every second Saturday of the month at 224 NW Second Ave. in downtown Gainesville.
The Artisans’ Guild was established in 1970 to establish a collaborative space for local artists and creators. Since then, the Guild has moved seven different times throughout Gainesville. After moving from 201 SE Second Place in Gainesville and closing temporarily in April due to the COVID-19 pandemic, it is now settled in its downtown Gainesville location at 224 NW Second Ave.
Now, the guild is hoping to support creatives and businesses owners as effects of the COVID-19 pandemic have been felt throughout the city, said Jeanne Bunting, the gallery’s president.
“How important it is to support small businesses and local artists — it's something that makes Gainesville so special,” Bunting said.
The market will feature 15 emerging and locally established artists and makers selling and showcasing artwork along a one-way path and social distancing will be enforced. Each vendor table will provide hand sanitizer and masks will be required throughout the market.
Saturday’s market and the events to follow will feature a selection of live, local music and food vendors. The Oct. 31 debut will feature jazz musician Eric Diamond and Sweetberries, local eatery and custard shop.
Bunting said a goal is to provide financial and community support to many local artists who may have lost income due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Most local artists make their income from art shows and festivals, many of which have been canceled throughout the year.
“A lot of artists depend 100 percent on the income that they make on the shows,” she said.
A typical fall is normally a busy season for local artists, she said, with many local shows being put on during this time.
“We have such a close art community and some extremely talented people living here and we want to be able to give them a chance to sell their work when they otherwise could not be,” Bunting said.
Jacqueline Collett, the gallery’s treasurer and board of directors, has felt the difficult effects of the pandemic in selling her art, she said. She had to switch from selling her pieces at live events and at art shows to promoting herself on an online platform.
“In terms of fine craft, which is what I do, the demand has gone down,” she said.
However, Collett said she has seen demand for wall pieces and home art increase since people started staying home more.
In further efforts to bolster and support its creative community, the guild crafted and released its first ever statement of diversity and inclusion in July. The organization wanted to create an inclusive art space in Gainesville, Bunting said.
“That kind of was the genesis of us starting these art markets to not only help out struggling artists right now, but to put that statement into play,” she said.
The first Artisans’ Guild Gallery will take place Oct. 31 from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. at 224 NW Second Ave and will continue every second Saturday of the month.