Benson First Friday Art Walk Scheduled for July 6th
Last month, the community of Benson, NE was witness to its first Benson First Friday (BFF) art walk. Hundreds of people flocked to the streets to walk up and down the streets of downtown Benson, wandering in and out of impromptu “art galleries” held within bars, restaurants, window fronts, and various businesses. Most bore witness to on-street art including live music, buskers, mural drawing, and a traffic-stopping fashion show down the middle of Maple Street.
“The energy and positivity that was present on the streets of Benson last BFF is still bringing chills to me,” said Alex Jochim. “It was like nothing I’ve seen in Benson before. I am really excited for this next one.”
This month, on July 6, BFF returns. Over 30 artists, live bands, live music, fashion, performances, installments, after-dark projections, and other events will be held in downtown Benson, starting at 7pm and going on into the night. Various bars are hosting happy hours from 5pm and 7pm. Then the majority of art showings will happen between 7pm and 10pm. And then after 10pm, live shows, performances, and projections will be held.
The art walk will incorporate found spaces, public/private artist studios and the established venues spanning the stretch of Maple between 60th and 65th Street. Each locale will feature art that is best suited to the space it is in– creating a diversity of work unrivaled in Omaha.
“Alex and I are more than excited to see something more innovative and inviting happening in Omaha’s First Friday art scene; to see opportunities for Omaha artists that perhaps would not have the ability to show at a downtown or West Omaha gallery. Maple Street is the perfect circuit to experience these numerous happenings in one night. And it’s totally walkable.” (Jamie Danielle Hardy)
Some highlights of the night include the following: another “Concrete Catwalk” fashion event on the streets of maple, happening around 8pm; an Artists Market held at the Benson Theatre space, spearheaded by artist Miss Cake; A “Drag Race” and drag performance, located on the streets and inside the Benson Theatre space; Artist Wayne Brekke and blacksmith Scott Smith at Jerry’s Bar; benefit efforts for BFF and the new PETSHOP galleries (located at 2725 and 2727 N. 62nd St.), including a throw-back Kissing Booth by artists Alex Jochim and Sara Pate; after-dark street projections by artists including Justin Beller and Brendan Titrud; and late-night shows by Chromafrost and Domestica (at Sydney Bar and Lounge), Knife.Fight.Justice, John Klemmensen and the Party, Family Picnic, and Underwater Dream Machine (at Barley Street Tavern).
Other artists showing include Shannon Claire, Sharpened Clothing, Beau Stuetelberg, Jonra Blender, Josh Audiss, J Michael McBride, Anthony Bradley, Alex Edmonds, Andrew Bailie, Omahoop, Brittan Rosendahl, Daniel May, Mello Mic, Phoe Mess, Kelly J King, Jamie Danielle Hardy, Curbside Clothing, Capoeira Angola, Solid Goldberg, and more.
Participating venues/businesses include Jake’s Cigars, Beercade, Goodall Law Firm, DP Muller Photography, Studio B, Pizza Shoppe Collective, the old Benson Theatre space, Star Deli (opening July 6th), The Sydney, Jane’s Health Mart, Paperdoll Vintage Boutique, Lion’s Mane, Parlour 1887, Barley Street Tavern, Studio That Way, Sailor’s Grave Tattoo, Blue Pomegranate Art Gallery, Zombie Glass, Ella’s, PETSHOP, Choice Custom Framing and Gallery, Jerry’s, Burke’s, The Waiting Room, and more to be announced later.
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