Even as Mayor Hood was scheduled to toast her emerging arts district with a tour of galleries downtown Tuesday night, a longstanding gallery further north in the designated arts corridor was facing eviction.
The Warehouse Gallery will shut its doors within two months. That's how long landlord Carolyn J. Roberts gave gallery owner Robin "RV" Van Arsdol to find a new home.
According to Van Arsdol, Roberts is fed up with the bad press she's received for failing to support her art tenants. Last October, Roberts was criticized for trying to quash an Alden Arts District festival that closed streets in the area. (Roberts was unavailable for comment.) Hoping to drive the galleries off, Van Arsdol says Roberts wanted to double their rents.
Then, after a Sentinel column insinuated that Roberts was a Grinch, she told Van Arsdol to get out. Van Arsdol says another Roberts tenant, the Flying Turtle Gallery, is also being forced to close.
Van Arsdol still plans a fund-raiser Dec. 8-9 that was meant to help offset the higher rent. After that, Van Arsdol doesn't know where he'll be. "Guess what? I've got 60 days to find out," he says.