By Nick Garrison
It’s that time again, when the air is thick, the sun comes out to play, and there are more free events showcasing local talent than we know what to do with. Taking full advantage of this contagious spirit is the Southdowns Village and Perkins Road Art District. On Thursday evening, April 17, the semi-annual Art Wine Design collaboration will take place in the shopping center parking lot. This free, all-ages event will feature “a great collaboration of local artists, fine furnishings, unique boutiques and modern design,” said Designer at Monochrome Contemporary Furniture, Bridget Tiek.
“Each merchant in Southdowns Village will be featuring a range of live painters, original artwork, musicians and local cuisine. Some merchants also run specials as promotions for the night,” Tiek said.
Art Wine Design at Southdowns
4221 Perkins Road
4221 Perkins Road
The participants bring an innovative touch to their crafts. Local artists and business such as Ann Connelly Fine Art, Bella Bridesmaids, Stafford Tile and Stone, and Spectrum Fitness will be represented, among others. Live music will be provided by local experimental soul band, SpeakEasy from 6:30 til 8 p.m.
“The event was initially designed to promote our new enrollment in a state-sponsored cultural district in 2006,” Tiek said.
After the shopping center was revitalized in 2005, the attraction to new local businesses has brought the Southdowns community more business.
“We continue to utilize our cultural district for its benefits, including waiving sales tax on all original art sales.” Tiek said.
Since the event happens but twice a year, the collection of works varies with the change of the seasons. The newest art and design in the community is highlighted, which challenges the creators to further stretch their imagination.
“The historic Southdowns area has been a cornerstone for Baton Rouge commerce and living’” Tiek said. “The wide range of retail and businesses within Southdowns allows us to reach a wide audience.”
Because this event emphasizes the unrepresented emerging artists in our community, it breeds new collectors of local art, and helps to nurture a scene that’s indicative of Baton Rouge culture.
“The collective effort for the betterment of the area has led to significant changes, culturally, that lead to more commerce,” Tiek said.