‘Hop’ to Duluth art galleries in style this yearThe 23rd annual Gallery Hop is Saturday, April 20, and for the first time, limousines will be used to transport attendees from gallery to gallery. With the event’s tie to Earth Day, mass transit is a must, said organizer Bev Johnson.
You don’t have to be an art aficionado to visit Duluth’s art galleries in style.
The 23rd annual Gallery Hop is Saturday, April 20, and for the first time, limousines will be used to transport attendees from gallery to gallery. With the event’s tie to Earth Day, mass transit is a must, said organizer Bev Johnson.
“We’ve always had some kind of a mass transit as a way to incorporate Earth Day,” she said. “This year we’re going with the ‘eARTh Limo Bus.’”
The Gallery Hop is considered a spring kickoff event for Duluth art galleries. Johnson said she has been pleased with the turnout in recent years, but she hopes the transition from school buses to limousines will bring in even more people.
This year’s hop features 11 Duluth galleries. Most are located downtown and in Canal Park, but the Tweed Museum at the University of Minnesota Duluth has also been added to the list this year.
Admission to all of the galleries is free from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday. The limos will run on 20- and 40-minute loops, allowing patrons to make the rounds.
“The biggest thing is that it’s a free event,” said Johnson, who also owns the Art Dock gallery in Canal Park. “It’s about encouraging the public to come out and enjoy art and enjoying their time in Duluth and seeing what creative people we have. You can see all the fun things happening in the local art community.”
Each participating gallery will be hosting its own show and many pieces are available for purchase.
Laura Goewey’s Blue Lake Gallery in Canal Park has been participating in the Gallery Hop since it opened 12 years ago. This year, the gallery will feature creations made from recycled “gears, gadgets and gizmos” by Park Point artist Tony Mancuso.
“He makes some of the most amazing robots out of car parts and pieces, vacuum cleaners, doorknobs,” Goewey said. “It’s pretty amazing what he does.”
The exhibit is a natural fit for the Earth Day-themed event, she said.
“It’s cool that something somebody throws away doesn’t have to end up in a landfill,” Goewey said.
Each gallery will feature its own unique touches.
Dan Neff, owner of Lake Superior Art Glass, a relatively new business, will be presenting glassblowing demonstrations.
The Duluth Art Institute will be holding the grand opening for its new store.
Residents at the Washington Gallery, an apartment complex for artists, will be opening their doors and inviting people in to look at their creations.
The Tweed Museum, a newcomer to the Gallery Hop, will be hosting a family day from 1 to 4 p.m. with storytelling, music and art projects for children.
The Gallery Hop was first held in Duluth in 1990. The event, which was deemed a success by organizers, featured just six galleries and the Duluth Art Institute that year. Since that time, it has grown to as many as 17 galleries throughout the Twin Ports.
The Gallery Hop always takes place on the Saturday nearest Earth Day. Environmentalism has been a major theme since the event started, Johnson said.
And the focus has always been on locally created art.
“People always say they don’t want to buy stuff made in China,” Johnson said. “Well here’s your chance to buy something made right here in America.”
For gallery owners like Johnson and Goewey, the Gallery Hop is also a good way to prepare for the busy summer season before tourists start arriving.
“It’s a pretty high energy day; a lot of people come through,” Goewey said. “I just really encourage people to come through the local galleries. We have such an amazing group of artists in the area. You don’t have to buy anything. Just get inspired and be part of the hop.”
WHAT: eARTh Day Gallery Hop
WHEN: Saturday, April 20, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.
WHERE: 11 participating Duluth galleries – see a listing of the galleries participating in the Earth Day Gallery Hop at the link with this story.
WHY: To celebrate Earth Day
HOW: transportation provided by eARTh Limo Bus. Hop on the limo at any of the participating galleries. Free parking available at
DeWitt Seitz Marketplace, Duluth Depot and the Holiday Center.