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ABQ Artwalk thrives as pandemic slows

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On April 2, dozens of artists, designers and artisans lined the sidewalks of Central Avenue for the Albuquerque Artwalk, an independent showcase event designed to help artists show and sell their work to the public.

According to the ABQ Artwalks website, the march aims to support local artists, micro-businesses and local brick-and-mortar establishments by organizing cultural enrichment events, the creation of art venues and an online platform for emerging artists .

The ABQ Artwalk typically takes place every first Friday of the month, but the event has been postponed due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. According to ABQ Artwalk Instagram, the event was canceled in April and May 2020 and hosted a unique curbside walk in June. July 2020 was the first month the Artwalk resumed regular in-person activities.

Gilbert White, a local artist who previously had stalls at the art walk, said the art walk has changed, not only since he started participating, but since the start of the pandemic.

The first time I came, honestly, it was pretty dead. Definitely, with each month, I notice it gets bigger and bigger, White said. I think now that it’s warming and the pandemic is slowing down, I think more people are coming out of it.

The art walk included not only a variety of local artists, but also different sponsored events located around Central, including live painting at 505 Central Food Hall and a t-shirt lab that included a retail pop-up and featured artwork Warehouse 508 Youth Arts and Entertainment Center.

Nevertheless, the main objective of the event is to showcase local artists and designers.

It’s a great opportunity for small businesses to network, meet clients and earn extra income, White said. I am so grateful for this because I have met so many salespeople and artists and they are all very good human beings. Everyone helps each other.

John Scott is a freelance journalist for the Daily Lobo. He can be contacted at [email protected] or on Twitter @ JScott050901



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