The West Loop has long been synonymous with Chicago’s avant-garde culture, especially the visual arts, which have benefited from the neighborhood’s empty warehouses and historically cheap rents. But as Chicago reported in its February issue, the West Loop is quickly becoming one of the city’s most desirable neighborhoods, with trendy new offices, high-end real estate, and incredible restaurants—and it’s not without consequences for the artists and galleries that paved the way.
Over time, Mars watched as blue chip galleries moved to places such as West Town, and Motor Row in the South Loop. He himself found a way to keep his doors open by adding a framing shop and café to his space. It’s an unusual but profitable business plan for an art gallery, and one that Mars says reflects his community’s tenacity. No matter how the landscape changes, the arts endure. Because, as Mars puts it, “We’re survivors.”
Not exactly sure which gallery he's referring to, but we've definitely seen an upswing in Motor Row. As you may remember we posted about Shane Campbell Gallery and Motor Row Gallery opening last year.