BLOG 012 ODE TO A GALLERYby Jim Rataczak on 02/05/13
It was with a sizeable dose of melancholy last fall that I learned that one of the galleries that represents my work would be closing its doors after almost a decade of success. The gallery was housed in my hometown’s old library building, a structure that held lots of fond childhood memories for me. I used to spend hours sitting on the floor perusing books like the Audubon Encyclopedias and Peterson’s Field Guide to Eastern Birds during my family’s regular trips to town. But the library moved to a new building several years ago, and the old place (which had also served as the town’s jail in the early 1900’s) fell vacant. To its rescue came a civic-minded High School friend of mine, her talented building-remodeler husband, and a dedicated and visionary friend.
They peeled back layers of old flooring, revealing a (now gleaming) old parquet, and fixed up the roof, walls, ceilings…everything, really, and opened “The Snooty Fox” art gallery in 2004. The gallery showcased the work of some truly talented artists, most hailing from within a radius of 50 or so miles from the town. Precious few galleries have I seen that could boast the top of the line quality of art that “Snooty” did during its successful tenure, and it was truly an honor to exhibit my work there. But even more, as a one-time resident, and still frequent visitor to the area, I found the gallery’s civic-mindedness to be perhaps its real strength. The Snooty Fox promoted local artists, educated people of all ages, hosted various community events, and greatly enriched the social fabric of the area.
Alas, as is often the case with talented people like the proprietresses of the Snooty Fox, several other successful and worthwhile endeavors demanded their time and efforts as well. So, after much thought, my friends made the difficult decision to end their highly successful run. Yes, I will miss their terrific representation, their bon-homie, and all that they did for the community. But I am also left with more fond memories of the old building, now wonderfully refurbished and awaiting a new visionary to write the next chapter of its history. Good by, Snooty Fox...and thank you.