Drawing on a lifetime of art appreciation, Catherine Todd realized that New Orleans needed a single place where locals and visitors alike could fall in love with the city’s art scene. After a fortuitous meeting with fellow artist and businessperson Collin Ferguson, the duo founded Where Y’Art, an online gallery showcasing the works of over 100 New Orleans artists. With the online showcase and a physical gallery in the Faubourg Marigny, the Where Y’Art team is determined to shine a light on the city’s creators.
“I would love NOLA art to be as well-known as music and food is here,” says Todd. “Behind the canvas of culture, artists are our creators.” Even a quick glance at the online gallery shows off the many different mediums represented, including photography, illustration, painting, street art, sculpture, digital art, mixed media and bead art. There’s also a wide range of styles and subjects, with a healthy selection of New Orleans buildings, streets scenes and musicians in the mix.
Even those without a background in art will find the Where Y’Art gallery accessible and inviting. Artists are at the forefront of the website, and they speak to the audience and answer questions that break down the mystery of their creative process. By relying on interesting art curators from a variety of backgrounds, including DJs and architects, Todd hopes to help new audiences find a way into the art world.
In addition to giving local artists a platform, the Where Y’Art team also hopes to create awareness and value for local art. As Todd explains, supporting local art is about more than buying a painting or photograph, because it also helps sustain culture in New Orleans. “In 2020 alone, gallery sales have paid $370,000 to local artists and framemakers, and they have kept artists on staff full-time,” says Todd. Thanks to the consulting services from Where Y’Art, clients can get a curated selection of local pieces for their business, whether that’s a hotel, restaurant or shop. “Art is good for business,” says Todd, “and local art is even better for business.”
Todd invites everyone to check out the gallery and bring more attention to this vital part of New Orleans culture.
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