Looking to buy local jewelry, furniture, or beautiful prints? Maybe you want to have something in your house you made yourself. As1 Gallery and Muse Paintbar, new additions to the Old Port art scene, can do each of these things.
As 1, upstairs on 24 Exchange Street, brings you great works from a variety of local artists. You can find cards for $5, or furniture for over $500. Owned and run by Andrea Helm, the gallery was born from the owner’s desire to see her stepmothers art fully represented. She decided to start a gallery dedicated to art from her community; one saturated with talented artists. The gallery opened in early June after a series of obstacles.
Originally slated to open on Forest Ave, complications with codes made it impossible for Helm to open a gallery there. In her search for a new space, Helm found upstairs Exchange street to be the place for her. The next two months were spent fixing up the building, molding it in the spirit of “rustic elegance,” with exposed beams and beautifully unique chandeliers. The gallery was set to open on First Friday in June. That Tuesday even more complications arose with the ceiling, and the As1 team worked three days cleaning and hanging until 9 pm on Friday. The gallery opened for an hour that night, selling two works. We hope this luck will continue for Helm’s and her gallery family as they bring spectacular local art to our corner of town.
If you want to make art instead of buying it, but aren’t very comfortable throwing paint around, look no further than 245 Commercial Street. Muse Paintbar has a recently opened location in Portland, in addition to their bars in Providence, West Hartford and Manchester.
The philosophy behind Muse is that anyone can paint, and the space is there to make that possible. Visitors sign up to paint a painting online, and the night of are provided canvas and paint as they are walked through the creation of a painting. Deviations from the “master copy” are encouraged, ranging from changing the orientation to developing a completely different color scheme. Patrons discover their creativity with a brush in one hand and a glass of wine in the other, leaving with their very own painting.
Whatever way you want to get your art, the Old Port has it!