So Pink erupted down on our corner of the street last Thursday evening. A night buzzing in that way only gallery-filled Vyner Street in the mid-summer warmth can – from the plush air of the big white cube that is the Wilkinson gallery (last throws of the beautiful Elizabeth Magill show, if you missed it you missed a treat), the restrained formality of Dialogue, the end of term student show at the Vyner Street gallery complex, the DIY artist-run walls of our space, to the last-minute unannounced untitled impromptu things going on the actual street or in hastily cleared studios and spaces (I refuse to use the term pop-up, that’s used for anything and everything these days). The official First Thursday website won’t tell you about most of it, you just have t o come along and discover for yourselves – spontaneous, alive. exciting…
From our (Wire-like) corner right smack bang in the middle of the street it can be a little difficult to work out what exactly is going on, people come in, “have you seen what’s over there?”, “What do you think of the new show at Forty7?”
No escaping the confines of Cultivate on a First Thursday evening, no serious opportunity to see what’s going on elsewhere on Vyner Street what with all the crowds in our space, the questions, the conversations, discussions, debates, the looking after it all, (the selling). Vyner Street is evolving again, the buzz last night was a buzz of genuine excitement and serious interest rather than crowds just hanging out and having a good time
“really great how you’ve hung on through the bad times to still be here as it starts to get really good down here again” said one Cultivate regular as he enthused about the goings in the freshly opened, newly converted and now much bigger space formally occupied by the rather tired Fred Gallery
“What do you mean?” I asked,
“Well you’ve stuck it out here through all the negative publicity and the galleries not being open and now the whole place is alive and buzzing again”
– Well not sure if I see it quite like that, First Thursday is always a busy event down Vyner Street (always has been big crowds, positive interest, healthy sales on our corner on a First Thursday), last night was our 23rd in an unbroken run of First Thursdays, yes, it has always been buzzing. Last night, from our corner, even though two of the main galleries, Hada and Wayward didn’t open and take part, there did seem to be an extra buzz and yes I guess at times it has felt like we were making a last stand on our corner as the bigger galleries all stayed closed. Good to see Dialogue back open last night, first show in that well-proportioned space since last summer (we thought they’d closed for good), and very good to see the born-again Lime Wharf complex finally really opening up with several spaces (and new Toasters on their doors), LimeWharf alive with sculpture, performance, positive notions of community and more… Feels good down Vyner Street right now, and in the middle of it all last night, in the middle of the street bars, the performance and the crowds gathered in the street, First Thursday felt extra good. And in the middle of it all, we opened up with Pink, our 23rd First Thursday show (our 68th event in 22 non-stop no-time-off full-on energy-sucking exciting art-filled months).
Pink, twenty or so artists, filling our walls with a diversity of pinkness for First Thursday and for the next two weeks…