Attendance at the Danville Fine Arts Faire [sic] for the past three years appears to be a reflection of the sour economy that continues to grip the state and country. Four or five years ago, the Faire featured sidewalk-to-sidewalk people. On Saturday I was able to ride my bike down the street past booths and hardly have to hit the brakes.
Sunday was Father's Day, and that may have diluted the crowds somewhat, but Saturday's attendance was relatively sparse as well. In reality mainly a crafts event, the Faire's fare calls for primarily discretionary purchases, which tend to soften when the fins hit the fan.
Another sign of the economic times is the disappearance from Hartz Avenue of the Kevin Milligan Gallery--whose space is now occupied by a shoe store. Milligan is allegedly opening another location, but for now at least, the only remaining downtown art gallery is the city-run Village Theater Gallery, which rarely exhibits the work of local artists.
In the apparently unlikely event that the California economy is ever taken off life support (at least State Controller John Chiang has stopped payments to our feckless legislators), perhaps the arts will begin to flourish locally.
John A. Barry is a writer and avocational artist. To share anything art-related, call him at 314-9528 or email email@example.com