Updated: July 20, 2020 10:26 PM
Created: July 20, 2020 07:02 PM
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — As the art industry continues to take hits due to COVID-19, gallery owners and businesses along Santa Fe’s Canyon Road are finding new ways to adapt.
Nancy Ouimet owns Canyon Road Contemporary Art. Art galleries like hers and open for businesses, but have seen a decline in visitors because of the pandemic.
“Business is mostly down, meaning revenue is down,” Ouimet said. “What we're getting is people who are looking now and maybe collecting art later on.”
Ouimet is also an executive board member of the Canyon Road Merchants Association, which represents 80 galleries and 100 businesses along the half mile road.
“We’ve got incredible boutiques with handmade clothing, we've got jewelry designers, we've got a great local presence of jewelry you can't find anywhere else. Just a myriad of boutiques and restaurants too,” she said.
While most tourists and customers aren’t here in person, gallery owners and business owners have still found a way to reach them by going virtual. Some gallery owners are now offering tours online instead of in person.
“We've had to innovate as have all businesses and one thing that galleries do have is they have a loyal client following, so even with our doors shut it allowed us to create a deeper relationship with our existing clients, many whom were working at home, looking at their walls, feeling any degree of anxiety and the art, and the ability to talk to us on FaceTime, to tour the gallery virtually, has been a godsend for both us and our clients,” Ouimet said.
Ouimet said she’s confident Canyon Road can survive COVID-19.
"If you think of canyon road as a cottonwood tree, it's got deep strong roots and has grown very large and very strong against adversity. That's what's I think of and I think that Canyon Road with its long deep history can withstand our current conditions"
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