Editor: I have always been interested in the visual arts, and was elated to be offered a job as a part-time sales associate at Gallery Clarendon. During my career I worked as a university linguist and information-technology trainer, but not as an artist.
For the past two years, Gallery Clarendon, managed by the Arlington Artists Alliance, has been a favorite venue for crowds and shoppers on Clarendon Boulevard. Guests often stop in after visits to a local restaurant or to Market Common. The generous space has allowed for individual artists’ studios and art classes on the upper floor.
Visitors often reflect that they prefer the gallery as a venue to a restaurant, as it provides a novel point of interest in the Clarendon neighborhood.
The gallery has enhanced its offering by presenting a new show of art works every month, monthly wine-and-cheese receptions free of charge, and a juried show at least once a year. Artists’ sales have improved, and the viewer experience of so much excellent art in one place is beyond price.
Now a new restaurant owner has leased the space, and Gallery Clarendon is slated to close. The artists’ alliance is searching for a new space, but unfortunately cannot afford to pay the high rents required in the Clarendon neighborhood. However, since the alliance is a non-profit organization, developers can let it use the space while seeking a permanent lessee and write it off as a tax deduction.
The value of such an artistic center in the Clarendon neighborhood is beyond price. If anyone knows of a suitable space in North Arlington for Gallery Clarendon, would they let us know?
Carol Sparhawk, Arlington