Or why I write about other galleries and artists not affiliated with “A Small Art Gallery” (and why it should matter to the guy on the street.)
Resources are frankly limited when it comes to a small art gallery, especially a contemporary one in Prescott. Time, money, advertising design, and space on web pages and social media are precious commodities when you’re starting up and doing everything yourself. So why give a second, a sou, or a column inch to someone else? Because it matters.
It’s a little bit of enlightened self-interest to point out how great the art is in Prescott, to help raise all boats, to let everyone know that culture and the arts are as good (maybe better) in Prescott than in the more commonly thought of places in Arizona. I also firmly believe it.
Oh, I know that’s what the tourism department is supposed to be doing and for the most part they do the job we would expect a city department is capable of, namely, institutional and pretty broad. Here’s the difference. This is personal.
Everyone talks the talk that “word of mouth” and personal recommendation are the best referrals, the best advertising, that telling someone what you really believe is trusted more than any Madison Avenue, slick, high circulation advertising will ever do. I just have the opportunity now to do it.
I see a lot of art over the course of the week. I read a lot about it and sometimes it’s there in my sleep. As I have said before here, I’m no New York art critic, but like the guy on the street, ‘I know what I like’ and I do know quality and potential. Why not share that? Why not tell as many people as I can that the Yavapai College Gallery has a great show or that the artists at Electro or Krieger/Marcusen or the Shed Project have something special to see? Have you been to the Prescott College Gallery lately or PCA or Mountain Artists Guild? Do you know that next door to A Small Art Gallery is a fairly large collection of East Indian, Himalayan art at the Vigraha? HAVE YOU BEEN ON THE 4th FRIDAY ART WALK?
And the person on the street? Why should he or she care? If it were only because of the commerce it would probably be worth it and important, but it’s much, much more. Whenever we feel good about ourselves, our family, the place we live, it makes life better. When someone tells you that you live in a place that has great art, that your town is a cut above many when it comes to quality of life, when people are envious that you are surrounded by a stimulating community in a fantastic natural environment. You can’t help but feel good. And when you actually participate in it, that’s even better.
Prescott is diverse in its culture. We have heritage, myth, tradition and innovation. Some of it goes elsewhere and some of it remains undiscovered. You can pick and choose what fills your spirit. If it’s cowboys and cattle, it’s here. If it’s new and quirky, it’s here. If it’s something a little more refined, Prescott’s got it too.
I just think saying something about it is a good thing.