The Artery marks 40 years of fun, friends and artistic excellence with an anniversary celebration from 7 to 9 p.m. Friday, Feb. 14.
Valentine’s Day is an appropriate time to celebrate this love affair with art and artists. Reflecting the theme, the gallery is filled with members’ creations that are heartfelt, interesting, amazing and fun. Look for a heart shape in many of the pieces — sometimes obvious and sometimes hidden.
In 1974 a group of avant-garde Davis artists and craftsmen decided they wanted a place to sell their creations. An art auction that included donated pieces from Wayne Thiebaud and Robert Arneson was a resounding success. The first store was upstairs in Court ‘N Cedar on G Street. A name was in order: the pretentious Davis Royal Academy of Arts was rejected, but The Artery combined the word “art” with the concept of a conduit channeling art to the public.
The doors opened on Dec. 17 and excited members gleefully called each other as pieces were sold. They cheered when the first month’s sales were a whopping $3,500. With growing success, The Artery moved to 207 G St. and in 2002 expanded into the neighboring space. Walls came down; paintbrushes flew; and dust billowed as The Artery became today’s shop and gallery.
As one of the oldest cooperative art organizations in California, the goal has been to offer high-quality fine art and contemporary crafts at fair prices.
“With 68 members, we work together and support each other and the community, hoping that The Artery will always be a place where people meet to enjoy many forms of art,” a news release said.
The reception for “Forty Years of Love” coincides with the Davis Second Friday ArtAbout. The Artery is open seven days a week, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Saturday, noon to 5 p.m. Sunday and until 9 p.m. Friday.