New art space opens in downtown Albuquerque

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ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. – Downtown Albuquerque has seen its fair share of businesses pack up their bags, but there’s a new business that just opened their doors Friday. 

The Groove is a new art space off of Gold and Third Street, and it operates as a lot of different things for artists.

“We offer a lot of classes. We offer classes in every kind of art for every kind of artist,” said Erika Harding, owner and director of The Groove. “We offer a gallery and that helps give people a place to show and sell art.”

The Groove also offers studio space for artists to rent out.

“This is the studio space I rent which I’ll be working in, and I also am one of the artists that exhibits in the gallery here,” said Alison Robbenhaar, co-director of The Groove. 

There’s also walls that artists can rent out to display their pieces too.

“This is the first time I’ve ever had it up where anyone else can see it. I’ve definitely done paintings for, you know, friends and family or smaller commissions, but it’s a real big leap to have something and say, ‘I’m going to display this, and if you want to buy it you can.’” said Lise Watkins, a gallery artist. 

In the span of three months, Harding and her team found this place, fixed it up, and had their grand opening on Friday with a showing of at least 200 people.

In this space, you can buy pieces from around $2 all the way up to thousands of dollars. Making for a wide variety and talent levels who can show their work.

Harding – who specializes in making mosaic art pieces – says one of the main reasons for opening this unique space was to have a place to hosts all kinds of artists of all different levels.

“I would call it almost an ‘othering’ that people think that artists have to have special training and like it’s a special club,” Harding said. “If we can take some of that, those barriers away for people, more people are going to be willing to try.”

The opening of The Groove is something Harding and her coworkers see as a bright light back into the city.

“There are challenges there is no doubt,” said Harding. “I’m invested in making downtown more safe, and more vibrant, and more sort of friendly.”