Monday, May 05, 2008

It Was 20 Years Ago Today: May, 1988 Hop

In May, 1988 The Short North arts district looked different from today. Ritchey's (upper left) at the corner of Lincoln and High was an important collector's shop. Putt'n On The Dog (upper right) had half a Fairlane in its storefront window and many vintage clothes like its sister store Atlantis (see below) futher north. There was truly a gap between the southern gallery hop area and places north (things thinned out north of 1st Avenue). Yet, Buttles and High was still a mixture of old and new. Waldo's (lower left) was on the corner, but Lincoln TV (sold and serviced used TVs) had moved to a new location on the west side of High Street only a few years before 1988. JUKE (lower right) was a trendy shop of furnishings from a past era.
The Northern Short North still had a variety of shops. Science Fiction sold used collectables. The Geoffery Taber Gallery was showing Hopi Indian Art (top right), unusual for its programming at the time. Doo Wac Hair Studio was an important gallery hop place for cuttin edge art. Peter Massing was putting together an installation of classical motifs in Doo Wac. Atlantis was right next to Doo Wac showing trendy vintage clothes. The north Short North was more like Fox-Wood Surplus while the southern gallery hop area (Goodale to Hubbard Streets along High Street) sported fancy awnings and colorful signage.
The Ideal Building had a Henry Moore show at Nicolae Gallerie, but next door was a show about homeless people (above pictures). Smokey Brown contributed a basement installation of figures made from discarded trash.
Waldo's On High was doing their third annual Wearable Art Show. One lady stood as a statue in the window, some shirts made by artists hung on the wall, but the show mostly consisted of doing wild hair dos. ( The current Waldo's was doing hair for the gallery hopper to watch in May, 2008). The Gallery Hops were well attended with street musicians at many corners in 1988 (above lower left). Of course, it took in a smaller number of blocks and businesses than today. Oh yeh, There was a trolly streetcar of sorts (lower right) that took people up and down High Street.
Other things going on on High Street in May, 1988: The Wexner Center was into its third year of construction. The City Center Mall was under construction downtown as well as the Green Building (530 fee t) and Three Nationwide Plaza Tower (408 feet) and their shared atrium. The Riffe State Office Tower (503 feet) was just finishing up. It pretty much was the swan song year for big contruction projects on High Street.
On campus Schoolkids Records was closing May, 1988. The business was given over to Usedkids Records, its used record shop in the basement. CD's were becoming popular in a big way and the record business was changing.

Sunday, May 04, 2008

May 2008 Gallery Hop

High Street was in rare form for the May, 2008 gallery hop. (click on images to get a bigger picture) Spring had bloomed and the unique look of the Short North street was looking its best. Norka Futon had an artist painting a model sitting relaxed in one of their futons. The campaign to discuss STREETCARS for the street was bending ears. And... monsters and devils abound.
Picture taking was everywhere, even the middle of the street. Even Prom Queens got their digital cameras out. Many musicians were playing on the sidewalks and pocket parks.
Mahan Gallery and Sherrie Gallerie brought out their best artists for May. Mahan had Rhode Island School of Design artists Eileen Behnke and Leon Benn with well painted and drawn scenes. At the Sherrie Gallerie the long awaited show by retired OSU Professor SID CHAFETZ finally arrived. Chafetz is also a graduate of the Rhode Island School of Design, but he is famous for teaching Roy Litchenstein at OSU. Sid's prints are of a political nature dating back to 1948. His large, colorful recent works took a critical look at contemporary politics.
Please Recycle. Recycling trashcans were stationed along High Street, but at Grandview Merchantile there was a protest performance to bring attention to recycling. The store had recently had its windows mashed. The "caution" tape, plywood, and body outlines of the performers seemed to belong together.