Livestream Shopping Is Here to Stay. Here’s How to Nail the Art of Making Sales Entertaining

Prior to the coronavirus pandemic, if you wanted real-time advice on how to style a trendy Rebecca Minkoff sweater with an equally fashionable handbag, your best bet was to head to a retailer, such as Nordstrom or Bloomingdale’s, and track down a clerk. Post-Covid, Rebecca, the founder of the eponymous brand, will show you herself, right from her closet.

Minkoff is one of many retailers leaning into an e-commerce trend that the pandemic has helped accelerate: livestream shopping. Think of it like a QVC broadcast where brands and influencers pitch products but specifically for social media and e-commerce platforms where you can instantly click through to make a purchase. 

In China, livestream shopping is already a massive business, estimated at $63 billion. Thanks to Covid lockdowns, the trend is finally taking off in the U.S. Retailers now have a plethora of platforms to try. Google, YouTube, Amazon, Instagram, and Facebook have all launched live shopping offerings. Meanwhile, venture capital-backed startups NTWRK, Popshop Live, ShopShops, Moda Operandi, and others cater to more niche audiences. Some of these platforms are invite-only; others are open to any company who wants to start broadcasting.     

The payoff of making a live, direct pitch to potential customers is real: Minkoff says that generally every live video the brand produces, whether it’s on Amazon or Instagram, generates a 20 percent lift in traffic to its website. Lillebaby, a Golden, Colo.-based maker of baby carriers, has been using Amazon Live since the e-commerce giant rolled out a beta test with select retailers in 2018. On Amazon Prime Day Oct. 13, the brand says it saw an average video click-through rate of 20 percent, with 9 percent of those viewers making a purchase. 

To find out what it takes to succeed on livestream shopping platforms, Inc. spoke with both the entrepreneurs using them and the ones who created them. 

1. Figure out what your audience finds compelling. 

“We’re in the business of entertainmentizing retail,” says Aaron Levant, founder of Los Angeles-based NTWRK, a live shopping platform launched in 2018 that focuses specifically on curated product drops. NTWRK, whose audience is about 75 percent male, saw its revenue double between March and April. The platform features only products that can’t be found elsewhere, so retailers benefit from exclusivity and scarcity as part of the sales pitch.

The most successful product drops on his platform are the ones that have a great story, Levant says.

“Does it matter? Is anyone going to give a shit? Does it evoke an audible reaction?,” he says. He recommends that brands experiment with, say, showing the process of how a product is made or even pulling back the curtain on your own struggle as an entrepreneur. 

Minkoff says her customers want something much more practical: “Our girl wants to know the good, the bad, the ugly about the bag,” she says. “She wants the goods and wants to know where buy them and at what price.”

Lillebaby does a mix of content, from baby-carrier fit

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Holiday Gift Guide 2020: The Best Art Books

This holiday season, there are many books for the art-obsessed on your gift list to enjoy. From Andy Warhol drawings to Salvador Dalí paintings and DIY art projects to do at home, there’s something for everyone.

Judd (The Museum of Modern Art, New York)

The companion catalog to MoMA’s retrospective of American sculptor Donald Judd (on view through January 9)—the first in 30 years—is a stunning tribute to the late artist.

Dalí: The Impossible Collection (Assouline)

This tome spotlights 100 works by surrealist Spanish painter Salvador Dalí by exploring his myriad influences and inspirations from Old Masters to realism, Impressionism, to his obsessions with religion, science and stereoscopy.

B. Wurtz: Pan Paintings (Hunter’s Point Press)

Edited by artist and publisher Barney Kulok with an essay by art historian and curator Erica Cooke, this monograph centers on the work of New York-based artist B. Wurtz. The artist is famous for transforming nondescript disposable aluminum roasting pans and to-go containers into works of art by painting on them.

Open Studio (Phaidon)

At a time when we’re all stuck at home, this book offers a behind-the-scenes look at leading contemporary artists at work in their studios, with original art projects to recreate at home. Written by Sharon Coplan Hurowitz and Amanda Benchley, you’ll get an inside look into the art practices of John Currin, William Wegman, Rashid Johnson and George Condo.

Andy Warhol: Love, Sex, and Desire (Taschen)

We all know about Andy Warhol’s Pop Art paintings and sculptures but, long before he created those iconic works, he made many drawings celebrating the male form. Now 300 of these rarely seen risqué works on paper (done in pencil and ink) are showcased.

Mary Weatherford I’ve Seen Gray Whales Go By (Gagosian)

The catalog for Mary Weatherford’s recent painting show at Gagosian (her first solo exhibition with the gallery) features her masterful works of sponged paint on heavy linen canvases.

Helen Frankenthaler (Abrams)

Curator and historian John Elderfield writes about the work of abstract American painter Helen Frankenthaler in this beautiful book.

Cy Twombly: Making Past Present (MFA Publications, Museum of Fine Arts, Boston)

The catalog for the Museum of Fine Art, Boston exhibition this year features a selection of the American artist Cy Twombly’s paintings, drawings and sculptures alongside works of classical antiquity, including a number from his personal collection.

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Holiday gift ideas for the art lover in your life

Holiday get-togethers won’t be the same this year, but there are still plenty of ways to give artful gifts to the people you love.

While museums are closed until at least Dec. 18, many of their gift shops remain open, and some art galleries are hosting holiday sales. Bazaars have moved outside. Online options abound. Here’s our guide:

Art rager: Gamut Gallery’s ninth annual holiday market, “Raging Art On,” features original art, jewelry and home goods by 40 Minnesota artists Dec. 1-21. Artworks range from $5 to $1,000. Check out Las Ranas’ earrings inspired by astrology, tarot and tropical weather — a dangly delight of golden snakes and purple beads. Green thumbs will love Ray Alicia’s air plants snuggled into chunky wooden pots. (11 a.m.-6 p.m. Wed.-Sat., 717 S. 10th St., Mpls. Select objects available at Private shopping sessions Sun. by appointment.)

Handmade art: The Weisman Art Museum is closed, but its gift shop is open for business. Find jewelry, cards, toys, gifts for home, ceramics and other handmade items by local artists. Don’t miss Wood + Feather Designs’ earrings, made of wood, leather, feathers, stone and metal, and inspired by the elements and colors of Lake Superior. You can see some items on the shop’s Instagram (@wamshop). For personalized recommendations, call the store at 612-625-9495 or e-mail [email protected] Curbside pickup and shipping options are available. University of Minnesota students and staff get 20% off Dec. 3-6. (Noon-5 p.m. Thu.-Sun., 333 East River Road, Mpls.

Ceramic goodness: More than 1,000 pots by artists from across the country are on sale at Northern Clay Center’s holiday exhibition. Thematically, the pieces range from weird to serene. Ashley Bevington’s mucus-green-colored face on a vase has a grill for teeth, and burgers and drumsticks for hair, while Kevin Caufield’s smooth bluish-green colored cups look like the ocean. Ceramic jewelry is also for sale. Contactless curbside pickup or shipping available. (10 a.m.-5 p.m. Mon.-Fri., 2424 E. Franklin Av., 612-339-8007 or

BLM merch: Minneapolis North Side nonprofit Juxtaposition Arts celebrates the season with new Black Lives Matter merchandise, ceramics, textiles and bandannas made in-house by youth apprentices. Check out the black T-shirts and sweaters with “Black Lives Matter” in white text, from JXTA’s Textile & Screen Printing Lab, while the ceramics lab has made bowls and mugs covered in sharp red, black and blue geometric slices of paint. (

Go for glögg: The American Swedish Institute’s gift shop is full of divine Icelandic chocolate, handmade imported art, blankets, ceramics and plenty of Swedish fish. Find a handcrafted miniature manger scene from Sweden or a small lundi (puffin) from Iceland with a magnetic head. Supersoft blankets and a huge selection of socks are some of the warm items available for purchase. (10 a.m.-4 p.m. Thu.-Sun., 2600 Park Av. S., Mpls. 612-871-4907 or

Local artists: SooVAC is not doing its annual holiday sale, but the gallery is spotlighting artists such as Amina Harper, Jennifer Davis, Paula McCartney, Suyao Tian, and Elaine Rutherford and John

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Sacramento homeless shelter uses art to help heal abuse trauma

The Meadowview Navigation Center is asking the Book of Dreams to fund creative supplies this holiday season. Micaela Partida, holds her image “Sacrifice” outside of the center on Monday, Nov. 23, 2020. “Sacrifice means everything I have had to give up – not being able to be with my kids, not having my old life … not being out there like one of you making money,” she said of the painting.

The Meadowview Navigation Center is asking the Book of Dreams to fund creative supplies this holiday season. Micaela Partida, holds her image “Sacrifice” outside of the center on Monday, Nov. 23, 2020. “Sacrifice means everything I have had to give up – not being able to be with my kids, not having my old life … not being out there like one of you making money,” she said of the painting.

Special to The Bee

Sacramentan Micaela Partida, 38, can recite all the facts that led her to endure homelessness for three years, but she struggles to put words together describing all the trauma she experienced.

“I suffered from a disability due to a car accident when I was a teenager,” she said. It left her hip and other parts of her left side permanently weakened, but she never let it get in the way of her ambition.

She obtained an associate degree in communications and worked at two well-known technology companies until her disability “got in the way” and she had to stop work.

She says she endured years of abuse from a former boyfriend and had to leave “after he pulled a gun on me.” More recently, she was living in her truck before getting into the Sacramento Meadowview Navigation Center for Women in south Sacramento, which opened in October and has served nearly 50 previously unsheltered women.

If you prefer, you can print out this form and mail in a donation.

To claim a tax deduction for 2020, donations must be postmarked by Dec. 31, 2020. All contributions are tax-deductible and none of the money received will be spent on administrative costs. Partial contributions are welcome on any item. In cases where more money is received than requested for a given need, the excess will be applied to meeting unfulfilled needs in this Book of Dreams. Funds donated in excess of needs listed in this book will fulfill wishes received but not published and will be donated to social service agencies benefiting children at risk. The Sacramento Bee has verified the accuracy of the facts in each of these cases and we believe them to be bona fide cases of need. However, The Bee makes no claim, implied or otherwise, concerning their validity beyond the statement of these facts.

The shelter put a roof over her head, she said, while enabling her to work with the center’s team to obtain permanent housing.

Part of the recovery process for Partida is an art class, sponsored by the center, that is helping her and others begin to process what they have been through.

She says one of her paintings, an 11-by-14-inch abstract entitled “Sacrifice,” especially speaks for her.

“Sacrifice means everything I have had to give up – not being able to be with my kids, not having my old life … not being out there like one of you making money,” she said of the painting.

The bright handprint is a “statement of my life,”

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Know My Name presents a new, female story of Australian art

Review: Know My Name: Australian Women Artists 1900 to now, National Gallery of Australia

Know My Name is more than an art exhibition, although the exhibition attached to its launch is large, complex and wonderful. Described as a “gender equity initiative”, it is part of a strategy by NGA Director Nick Mitzevich to move towards a culture of inclusion in both collecting and exhibiting.

The exhibition begins with a massed display of portraits, hung like a 19th century salon, almost like an honour guard. The subjects are all people with a purpose.

Black and white photograph
Brenda L Croft, Gurindji/Malngin/Mudburra People; Anglo-Australian/Chinese/German/Irish Heritage, Matilda (Ngambri/Ngunnawal), 2019.
National Gallery of Australia, Canberra purchased 2020

Brenda L. Croft’s intense monochrome portrait of Auntie Matilda House, the Ngambri-Ngunnawal elder, provides a welcome to country. Nearby, Julie Dowling’s iconic, heartbreaking portraits of her family and community’s grief and loss are placed alongside Violet Teague’s Dian Dreams (1909), a painting with a subject who does not need to bask in anyone’s approval.

Some of the works are well known, others less so. Inevitably, the eye is drawn to Grace Cossington Smith’s The Sock Knitter (1915), the work that first placed women artists at the centre of Australia’s art history.

A century before the first Countess Report released its meticulously researched data on the inequitable treatment of women artists, The Sock Knitter was exhibited at the 1915 Royal Art Society of NSW’s annual exhibition. It was ignored, as was the artist, long regarded as a “lady amateur” flower painter.

Read more:
Still counting: why the visual arts must do better on gender equality

The Sock Knitter remained in her studio until the late 1950s when it was discovered by Bernard Smith. Cossington Smith may now be recognised as perhaps Australia’s most important modernist artist, yet she spent most of her life in relative obscurity.

The exhibition is Mitzevich’s signal of a change in the NGA’s collections policy to one of affirmative action. Previously, the gallery only held 25% of works by women artists. What surprised him, he has said, is that despite the increased profile of female artists in the last four decades, the proportion of works by living women artists collected by the gallery over that time was less than in earlier years.

The gallery’s first director, James Mollison, may not have been prejudiced in favour of women, but he was not prejudiced against us. Key works by Rosalie Gascoigne, Joy Hester, Tracey Moffatt and Emily Kame Kngwarreye, were all bought on his watch. Many more recent works in the exhibition come from elsewhere.

Close up photo: a motorbike and a boot
Tracey Moffatt, Something more #8, from Something more series 1989.
Naomi Milgrom AO Art Collection

It could be argued that it is not possible to reconfigure Australian art using only the work of one gender. There is, of course, an easy answer to this. For many years, almost all the art on public display was by men.

Relationships, not history

The beauty and the audacity of this exhibition is that it ignores any attempt to

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Blue Genie Art Bazaar opens Friday with pandemic-era shopping options

a close up of a toy: The Blue Genie Art Bazaar, seen here in 2016, opens Friday for its 20th year. [Dave Creaney for Statesman]

© Provided by Austin American-Statesman
The Blue Genie Art Bazaar, seen here in 2016, opens Friday for its 20th year. [Dave Creaney for Statesman]

An annual Austin tradition around the holidays, Blue Genie Art Bazaar celebrates its 20th anniversary this year. The 2020 iteration starts Friday, but with several shopping options geared toward coronavirus pandemic safety.

Part of the safety plan: offering two additional weeks of shopping time than usual. The bazaar will be open until Dec. 24. Also, Blue Genie has beefed up its digital services, including an online store that launched earlier this year.

Some options the bazaar’s offering:


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‒ Shoppers can make reservations online for “no wait” entry; walk-ins are allowed, but capacity limits might mean a wait.

‒ Online orders can be picked up at the bazaar or shipped anywhere in the U.S.

‒ This year, there’s a personal shopper program. Customers can fill out a request form detailing what they’re looking for (with 7 days of advance notice to complete the order).

‒ Blue Genie says the staff will set up a “virtual shopping experience” for groups.

“Blue Genie Art Bazaar has been a fixture of Austin’s holiday season for the past two decades,” said Blue Genie co-owner Dana Younger in a statement. “The pandemic has challenged us to redesign methods of shopping, but we’re excited to still be able to offer unique, artist-made gifts without sacrificing the experience. And now, with our new online store, we’re able to make those gifts available all year round.”

Blue Genie Art Bazaar’s physical location is 6100 Airport Blvd. It’s open 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. daily starting Nov. 13, except on Christmas Eve, when it will close at 6 p.m. Go to to browse items online.


Photos: Fall foliage changes Austin’s colors

Austin restaurants serving Thanksgiving takeout meals

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Art Is The Best Holiday Gift During A Pandemic

After eight months in front of screens, we all need a break from Zoom and Google Meet and a blank wall offers little solace in isolating times. Inundated with digital exhibitions after galleries and museums shut down amid the global pandemic, owning art has become more vital than ever as we hunker down to work and learn at home through a long winter. Gifting art delivers much-needed joy.

New York-based gallery Rehs Contemporary has made it easy to match the personalities and penchants of family and friends with an affordable work of art during Not A Creature Was Stirring. Take a sneak peek at the virtual exhibition which opens November 16 offering more than 50 unique works by five wildly different artists through December 31.

The Eiffel Tower lit up when many folks collectively exhaled in relief at the projected winner of the U.S. presidential election, even as the sore loser Tweeted his fake victory. No doubt those who fete this change will appreciate a bold blue ape in a festive sweater vest about to tap his index finger on a bright pink iPhone. Tony South’s wry humor calls out in His Greatest Tweet. If you’d rather make gifting apolitical, raise a toast to a drunken ape, a simian Frank Sinatra, or poke fun at law enforcement, with one of South’s many complex characters borrowing from pop culture and inviting a deep dialogue about human behavior through playful imagery.

Savor the light side of the winter holidays with a quirky Hanukkah gift. Stuart Dunkel’s ubiquitous mouse, Chuckie, a manifestation of the artist’s “emotions of mad, sad, glad, and scared, that we experience as life situations arrive to us,” stands proudly on a kosher dill pickle, noshing on a large chunk of the briny, sour treat in Keeping Kosher. If you’d rather indulge someone’s sweet tooth, Chuckie can be found frequently nibbling on an array of confections such as doughnuts he cleverly conquers from myriad precarious positions. Dunkel’s petite paintings pack a powerful punch of delight.

Please a feminist history buff with Lucia Heffernan’s Rosie, depicting a duck wielding a wrench in an homage to Rosie the Riveter, the enduring star of a campaign aimed at recruiting female workers for defense industries during World War II. Casting politics aside, again, choose from a variety of oval framed works celebrating Heffernan’s fascination with animals such as a ballerina chick or an otter businessman.

Cat lovers will coo over Beth Sistrunk’s Duo, as the viewer’s eyes meet those of two regal felines striking an intimidating pose. Sistrunk’s realistic paintings of animals are craftily cast in waggish settings such a cat in rose-colored, heart-shaped sunglasses, cats conjuring spirits with an orb, or a bird wearing a hat trying to lull to sleep three flowers with emoji-like faces planted in

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Art As Investment: The Gift That Keeps on Giving

MONTREAL, Nov. 10, 2020 /PRNewswire/ — Finding the perfect present for everyone on your list is probably at the top of your mind right now—maybe even a source of stress. And if you’re wondering what kind of gift to buy for the person who “has it all,” you’re not alone!

That’s why the recommends a gift of art as a unique gift that is memorable and increases in value each year; the quintessential gift that keeps on giving.

The emerging artist’s category is the ideal category of art that’s not only beautiful to look at but, also the perfect gift-as-an affordable-investment, increasing in value and filled with sentiment that few other objects can rival.


  • Choose art based on the person’s taste. Maybe they have a favorite subject matter or style, maybe they like abstracts or floral. Choose artwork that will speak to them. Remember, it’s not for you; it’s their gift FROM you.
  • Think about their hobbies and passions: Their interests provide the perfect clues. Do they love outdoor sports, maybe landscapes will be right. Maybe they love travel and would enjoy abstract cityscapes.
  • Visualize the space: Picture their home, consider their style, the colours and themes throughout their space. Do they have a traditional decor or more of a contemporary look? Do they display art? If so, consider what they showcase on their walls.
  • Visit an online gallery: Visit the website to see which artworks will work in their space. Make purchase and delivery arrangements with the gallery.
  • Originality counts: Remember, original art makes a very special and potentially valuable gift for everyone.
  • High profile emerging artists at the Kiki Sterling Gallery include internationally recognized Pauline T. Paquin, fashion and fine art photographer Arline Malakian, abstract artist Zari Kazandjian, abstract figurative artist Moses Salihou and figurative artist Dina El-Sioufi.

    Gift giving is an art and receiving something so unique and thoughtful will make the recipient feel special and since art lasts a lifetime, you’ll always share a beautiful connection.

    Contact: Karine Kosnak / 514-578-7908 / [email protected] / prices on website.


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    Column: Logan Heights art center gives women a free space to create

    When artist and filmmaker Omar Lopex started his job as the manager of the Athenaeum Art Center in Logan Heights in September, there wasn’t a lot for him to do. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the center wasn’t holding in-person classes or events, and the gallery was open by appointment only. So Lopex did what artists do. He took the materials at hand, and he created something special.

    The result of his creative brainstorming and artistic strategizing is the Womxn’s Open Art Studio, a new community outreach program offering use of the Athenaeum Art Center’s space, basic art supplies, guidance and other resources to the women of Logan Heights — for free.

    And by “Open Studio,” the Athenaeum really means an open studio. The program welcomes Logan Heights women of all ages and artistic interests to use the space and the resources however they see fit. And Lopex can’t wait to see what they come up with.

    “When you are starting out, you need time and space. It’s that whole idea of a room of one’s own. That’s what you need,” Lopex said.

    “If we can be the thing that an artist of the future uses early on to help them start their career, that’s great. And if it’s just a quiet space where somebody’s aunt or grandma can come and just sew or something, or have two hours to sit in a quiet room and just think, that’s great. This is open to all mediums and all levels.”

    The Athenaeum Art Center is located in Bread & Salt, a 45,000-square-foot experimental arts space whose tenants include architecture firms, galleries and artists. It is the satellite location of the Athenaeum Music & Arts Library in La Jolla, which was founded in 1899 as part of a nationwide network of nonprofit membership libraries that pre-dates the free public library system.

    There are 16 of these libraries left in the U.S., and like its fellow survivors, the Athenaeum has expanded its reach to include such public offerings as art classes, concerts and exhibitions. The Athenaeum opened its original satellite School of the Arts in downtown San Diego in 1996. After a stint at the Naval Training Center, it ended up in University Heights. When that building was sold, Athenaeum Executive Director Erika Torri convinced the board to relocate to the renovated Weber’s bakery that became Bread & Salt.

    When it moved, the School of the Arts was rechristened the Athenaeum Art Center to better reflect its neighborhood-centric location, the expanded space that would have room for exhibitions and community events beyond classes, and the spirit the Athenaeum hoped to create there.

    “I always loved Logan Heights,” said Torri, who has been with the Athenaeum for 33 years. “It is very community-oriented, and the location reflects us very well because we have always been open to all kinds of nationalities. We have free concerts and free exhibitions that are open to everyone, and we like it that way.

    “I think it is difficult

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    Enjoy art, beer and shopping specials at downtown Dayton’s ‘First Friday’ event

    Now that the spooky season has come to an end, businesses across downtown Dayton are gearing up to ring in the holiday season with new art, dining and entertainment options.

    a painting of a person in a room: The Dayton Art Institute. CONTRIBUTED

    © Provided by Dayton Daily News
    The Dayton Art Institute. CONTRIBUTED

    JUST IN: Live music returns to historic Dayton venue

    To showcase these new offerings, the Downtown Dayton Partnership will present its First Friday event, beginning at 5 p.m. on Friday, Nov. 6. A highlight of November’s First Friday event will be the local art, with several exhibit openings at local galleries.

    Throughout the event, customers at all downtown Dayton businesses are asked to continue to socially distance and wear face coverings.


    These are the places to enjoy art, dance, music, and film in downtown Dayton during November’s First Friday event:

    • The Contemporary Dayton, 120 N. Jefferson St.: The Contemporary Dayton presents the world of Nari Ward’s in “We The People.” With this nearly 60-foot-wide wall installation, Ward recreates the words that start the Preamble to the U.S. Constitution and seeks to explore how this living document remains vital as Americans reflect upon one of the most spirited elections of recent times. The gallery will be open until 8 p.m.
    • Dayton Art Institute, 456 Belmonte Park N.: Start your First Friday at the museum with its most recent exhibit, “From Picasso to Hockney: Modern Art on Stage,” open from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Friday. A traveling exhibition drawn from the McNay Art Museum’s renowned Tobin Collection of Theatre Arts, Picasso to Hockney features more than 120 objects of set and costume design.
    • Dutoit Gallery, 1001 E. Second St. (Front Street Galleries): An opening reception is planned for an exhibition featuring drawings by Sam Kelly made during a two-week Drawing Marathon through the New York Studio School of Drawing, Painting and Sculpture. Opening Reception: Friday, Nov. 6, from 5-9 p.m.
    • Dayton Society of Artists, 48 High St. Dayton: The gallery will debut its latest exhibition, “Emergence.” This is a juried exhibition showcasing works from area college students, or recently graduated students, who live, work or attend school within the Dayton area. Book an Appointment to see the Exhibition online or call 937-228-4532.
    • Dana L. Wiley Gallery, 1001 E. Second St. (Front Street Galleries): “Into the Woods” features the artwork of international artist Annika Lindfors and regional artist Barbara Martin.
    • Edward A. Dixon Gallery, lobby of 131 N. Ludlow St.: In the gallery’s new location in the lobby of the Talbott Tower, visitors will find a collection of curated art from gallerist Edward A. Dixon, including discounted pieces. The gallery will be open by appointment only. Call the gallery at (937) 985-2115.
    • First Friday at Front Street, 1001 E. Second St.: First Friday at Front Street provides Dayton with an evening rich in art, food trucks, community and live entertainment by Scott Lindberg. Artists, curators and craftsmen invite you to tour art studios, workshops and gallery exhibitions. Rolling Oasis food truck will
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