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Art enthusiasts discover new treasures at Downtown Gallery Night

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Photo by: Russell Reed | Staff Photographer
Art Enthusiast at Downtown Studio 18 Mar 24

Local art aficionados had the opportunity to enjoy a night of free art through the streets of downtown San Marcos.

People gathered Thursday when the Main Street Program held its first Downtown Gallery Night. The night consisted of four free art galleries, all within blocks from each other, allowing attendees to walk from space to space.

Rio Claro Studio, Dahlia Woods Gallery, 218 Studio and Café Monet Studio all took part in the festivities. Each gallery offered a variety of art to view and even purchase, from handmade scarves to sculptures and paintings.

Sam Alvarez, San Marcos local, said the sculptures and arrangement of 218 Studios caught his eye the most.

“The art and set up of this studio has been the most visually pleasing to me,” Alvarez said. “I think it has more of a darker theme, and I’m really into that.”

Photo by: Russell Reed | Staff PhotographerArt enthusiast at downtown 218 studios March 24
Photo by: Russell Reed | Staff Photographer
Art enthusiast at downtown 218 studios March 24

Dahlia Woods Gallery, which held its grand opening during the gallery night, included art from Texas State students and alumni.

“It was very whimsical,” Alvarez said. “I appreciate that the art wasn’t all curated, and featured some art from locals and the university.”

Rio Claro featured both art and fashion, with handmade accessories like scarfs and compact mirrors with handmade paintings on the cover.

Deanna Watson, San Marcos local, said she enjoyed the personalization of the pieces included in the Rio Claro studio.

“When you hear ‘gallery’ you think huge paintings and big sculptures,” Watson said. “But this is fun because it has small things you could purchase and take with you.”

She said her favorite part about the galleries was the individual personality of each place.

“It felt very intimate,” Watson said. “Every gallery had something different, and I appreciated that.”

Samantha Armbruster, San Marcos Main Street Program manager, said she hopes attendees enjoyed a night of unique art while discovering local businesses.

“I think they’re going to be surprised by the talent of the artists featured,” Armbruster said. “It’s a great community event night. It’s also exciting for new business. It’ll be expanding the diversity and variety of our business in downtown.”

Photo by: Russell Reed | Staff PhotographerArt Enthusiast at Downtown Dahlia Woods Mar 24
Photo by: Russell Reed | Staff Photographer
Art Enthusiast at Downtown Dahlia Woods Mar 24

Emily Peterson, Café Monet employee, said she saw a lot of new wonderers walk into their pottery-based shop.

“We have had quite a bit of people who had never been here before come in,” Peterson said. “They were curious about what we had. People can come and make their own art here, so I think that caught their eye.”

Armbruster said the diversity of the art gallery provides something for everyone, even for those who aren’t art lovers.

“It is just a good opportunity to get all your friends together,” Armbruster said. “It can be a girl’s night or just a night to get all your friend together, and with the variety I’m sure anyone could find something they like.”