Lots of artists, not many galleries.
For decades, those words summed up the limitations of the Santa Cruz art scene. This art-inspiring seaside city is awash with expressive souls who draw, paint, sculpt, design and construct, but for years there were only two galleries downtown. And one of them was a Thomas Kinkade.
A few years ago, the arts community came up with a novel solution: pop-up galleries and multiple art openings throughout downtown on the first Friday of every month.
The Santa Cruz First Friday art walk started small, with 40 or 50 people strolling in a group from exhibition to exhibition. Venues included bank lobbies and coffee shops, retail stores and beauty salons, as well as the city’s handful of dedicated galleries.