In mere hours Sherri Faye will see a dream that's been in the works for years come to life. Today, her studio and gallery, IMAGINE, is having its grand opening and its first exhibit, "Come Together."
Located on 13th and University Avenue by the gates of the U of M's campus, IMAGINE aims to help bring a little art to Dinkytown. Faye is a working artist herself, including 20 years in the Navy as an illustrator draftsman. The new gallery is part of an idea that she's had for awhile to engage with people through art.
“I want my gallery to feel inclusive, not exclusive,” says Faye. “Those galleries have their place, but this is kind of a grassroots gallery for me.”
The art won't be limited to the walls. Faye is currently on the hunt for a mannequin she can use to hold art. But in a less literal sense, there are upcoming exhibitions planned that will blend media, including a showcase for an artist who is also releasing a book. She may even throw in a poetry slam if the exhibit calls for it.
“I just want it to be a little different, a little fun, a little quirky, funky, humorous, and thoughtful,” she says.
The gallery's name was chosen carefully. A Beatles fan, Faye several years back painted a mural for an arts magnet school in St. Paul to help promote the Minnesota Beatle Project. One of her favorite songs is also John Lennon's “Imagine.” The word itself has also inspired her.
“Just the word gives you permission to envision something for yourself — or the world, or your family, or your house, or your life — without limits,” she says.
The fact that the gallery is right by the U of M isn't lost on her either, and she hopes to be able to work with the college in some way. Since the space is also going to be a working a studio, she plans to get involved in the education aspect of art as well, with workshops during the summer.
“It will be open, just in a slightly different capacity, with a different schedule of events,” she says of IMAGINE's use during the summer months.
The gallery's first exhibit, "Come Together," will stand as a representation of the kinds of artists she wants the gallery to focus on: local. While most may think that just means artists from around the Twin Cities area, she has no problem looking at artists outside the city limits.
“I say 'local' as in Minneapolis and the greater state of Minnesota,” she says. “But I'd like to keep it at that.”
In terms of buying art and reproductions, pricing is going to be affordable, which was something Faye took into consideration, as her business is in an area populated by penny-pinching college students.
“The prices will range from $10 to $2,000,” she says. “College kids who maybe don't have more than $10 in their pocket can still walk away with a cool piece of art, or funky little piece of sculpture.”
Faye hopes that her new business fully becomes a part of Dinkytown. Part of her childhood was spent living in Dinkytown, so she wants to bring some of that creative cultural center back to the place.
IF YOU GO:
Grand opening and "Come Together" reception
4 to 8 p.m. Thursday, September 10
There party will include by singer-songwriter Katy Vernon and catering by Burrito Loco.
Free; $5 suggested donation.