Volunteers help demolish Albuquerque art gallery to make way for new one

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ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. – Katie Doyle and her husband Marion Carillo started Trapdoor Projects a few years ago as a way to highlight local artists. But after getting the gallery off the ground in 2021, their dream went up in flames.

“For months afterwards when we’d hear sirens go by, yeah, we tense up and the worst for me was the smell. Anytime if the wind blew wrong, it would carry the smell of burn and char into the house,” said Marion Carrillo. 

After two fires and two years, they say it was time to tear it down with the help of community volunteers. 

“It’s just, it’s validating. It’s really validating to have our community turn up to help us with this thing that has been very emotional, and difficult and was incredibly traumatic,” Carrillo said. 

It was an emotional weekend tearing down the old to make way for the new.

“I think our big dreams, like the Barbie Malibu Dream House version of this was really two floors with the gallery on the lower floor, and a small apartment or studio on the top floor,” said Katie Doyle. 

Trapdoor Projects has continued to showcase local artists and musicians over the years, but they say they’re ready to make a space for artists built by artists.