I had some time after a visit to the hand doctor today, so I decided to check out the Philadelphia Fashion District.
The Gallery Shopping Mall in downtown Philadelphia has been completely renovated and reopened to the public in September as Philadelphia Fashion District. No one shops at malls anymore, so the developers couldn’t just follow the old model of retailing in a renovated space. So in addition to the standard mall retail therapy establishments, the Fashion District is offering some intriguing opportunities for artists, makers, and entrepreneurs.
The Fashion District has invested one million dollars for art installations geared to “making museum-caliber art more accessible to the city, while also elevating the beauty of The District.” The Bridgette Mayer Gallery has a display there with art for sale.
Conrad Benner, whose blog StreetsDept.com, chronicles street art in Philadelphia, has been charged with curating an exhibit of the work of Philadelphia street artists. These works are currently on display on the lower (concourse) level of the Fashion District through the end of this year.
The Fashion District has provided space for RecPhilly, an organization who provides co-working space, recording studios, visual labs & conference rooms for creatives. RecPhilly membership is financially accessible and has proven to so popular that there is now a waitlist. But new memberships are sure to open up in the future. Read more about RecPhilly on their website here.
The Fashion District is sponsoring more art-related events than I’ve written about here as well as planning to open up movie theaters, restaurants and performance spaces. They are trying to do a lot and we’ll see how it goes. Here are some pictures.