Niles Art group finds downtown home for gallery

By By JAMES COLLINS / Niles Daily Star
NILES -- The Niles Art Association and the owners of the downtown Fisher Building have recently helped each other to fulfill a need.
The art association needed a gallery to display their art and the owners of the Fisher Building needed to do something with their wide open lobby.
It was the perfect match and a variety of art is now on display at the building located at 306 E. Main St.
Members of the art association are equally excited.
She said the recently revived art group was looking for a place to display their art in downtown Niles, but did not have the money to buy or rent a building.
Through word of mouth they were linked up with the Fishers, who were contemplating turning their large lobby into some type of gallery.
Fisher said the gallery is a big improvement from the previously blank walls of the lobby.
The lobby is now peppered with a variety of oil and acrylic paintings, pastels and photographs.
He said there has been more traffic stopping by to check out the gallery than he anticipated.
The art association has representatives from the group on hand almost every day from 10 a.m to 4 p.m. to answers questions and handle art sales.
There are currently 28 members in the association and they continue to grow. Vanden Heede said three more people have recently inquired about joining.
The gallery will have a grand opening reception on March 7 with music from the New Apostolic Church String Academy.
In May, the art association will be holding the Celebration Chair Benefit Auction with proceeds benefitting the association and the Niles Main Street Initiative.
The auction will feature wooden chairs decorated by members of the association. It will take place at the gallery on May 2 from 2 to 5 p.m. with music from the Bill Nicks Trio.
Vanden Heede said the association would eventually like to provide art classes, lectures and shows to the Niles area.
The Niles Art Association holds their regular meetings on the first Tuesday of every month at 7 p.m. in the Four Flags Area Chamber of Commerce meeting room.

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