Photo Credit: PETER R. BARBER Gazette Photographer
Photo caption: Lynn Beaumont of Albany puts together a display in the window of a vacant Broadway store Friday in preparation for “Sixteen Windows of Art,” an exhibition that will open next month. 

Art coming to empty storefronts
Display to debut
in November in
downtown Albany

Gazette Reporter

   ALBANY -- In May, thousands converged upon a long-vacant bank for a one-night art show that transformed the building into a vibrant downtown gallery.  

   Now some of the same artists are planning a three-month exhibition that will fill the windows of some of Albany’s vacant buildings with paintings, sculptures and video installations.
Organizers hope the event, which is sponsored by the Downtown Albany Business Improvement District, will draw people to Albany.

   “Vacant windows will come alive with artists’ works,” said Beth Mankin, who is handling publicity for the exhibition.  Hopefully, she said, people who come into town for dinner and entertainment, such as a show at the Palace Theatre, will take the time to walk around and look at the art.
Called “Sixteen Windows of Art,” the exhibition will showcase the work of 16 local artists.
The event is being put together with the help of Albany Underground Artists, a local group that has staged several one-night shows during the past few years, including the show last spring at the former Home Savings Bank at 11N. Pearl St.

   The show generated a buzz about the local art scene that’s continuing to grow, said Chip Fasciana, one of the founders of Albany Underground Artists.  “People have shown that they’re starving for this stuff around here,” he said.  “There’s a lot of good, creative people around here.”

   Fasciana said the Albany Downtown BID approached him about helping put together the upcoming exhibition.
Albany has a lot of artists, but many of them have difficulty finding places to showcase their art, Mankin said.  “There are a lot of aspiring artists in Albany, but not a lot of spaces where they can put up their work,” she said.
Fasciana said he and other artists are hoping to convince at least one downtown property owner to transform the vacant upper floors of a building into a studio space where artists can work and live.  “As soon as we get a building owner to do it, that’s going to create a buzz,” he said.

   “Sixteen Windows of Art” will kick off Nov. 10 with a reception that will run from 4 to 7p.m. in the lobby of the Arcade Building.  There will be food, wine and music, as well as window tours provided by the Albany Carriage Service.  

INSET: “Vacant windows will come alive with artists’ work.”

Beth Mankin 

Exhibition publicist