On Sunday afternoon, Tim Faulkner and Margaret Archambault packed a moving truck with boxes of artwork, leaving the walls of their Portland warehouse empty.
They are moving to a new location in Paristown Pointe — their first “white walls gallery,” Archambault said.
“The lease was up and this was just the next evolution of the Tim Faulkner Gallery,” Faulkner said. “ We turned 10 years old in December and I looked at Margaret and we’ve done 40 percent of TFG in one spot now, which is unusual for us. It’s time for it to change and become something different.”
Archambault: “In our 10 years, we have never taken a break. We have been one show after another, one art show after another, one concert after another. It really occurred to us on our anniversary, we didn’t want to do this for another 10 years.”
Faulkner and Archambault, who are both still working artists, said their new space in Paristown Pointe — which is undergoing $28 million worth of development as a new arts district — is smaller than their Portland warehouse.
The schedule, they said, will be a little less demanding so they can focus on their personal artwork in addition to working with regional artists.
“Any art scene should include things outside of what you’re comfortable with,” Archambault said. “So for us, this new location is going to allow us — because the walls are going to be white — we can create an atmosphere that really is more versatile to whatever shows we want to bring and it will be exciting for us to curate some shows that feature artists that we admire that have never been in this market before.”
The Tim Faulkner Gallery first moved to the Portland neighborhood in 2014, after occupying spaces on East Market Street and in Butchertown.
In a news release at the time, a gallery spokesperson wrote:
As part of this initiative, Tim Faulkner Gallery is proud to join the ranks of some of the city’s most progressive thinkers in their effort to help bring the Portland neighborhood back to its former prominence. Rich in history and architecture, the Portland neighborhood provides a perfect background for the artists of this city to flourish.
Their time in Portland wasn’t without controversy; last year, 20-year-old Savannah Walker was shot and killed at a concert in the gallery’s events space. Then, in April of 2017, an exhibition at the gallery was called out for using imagery of swastikas.
But during their time in the neighborhood, the Faulkner Gallery hosted multiple successful events each week, was heavily involved in the community’s annual Arts and Heritage Festival, and paved the way for other arts organizations — including Louisville Visual Art, Quappi Projects and University of Louisville’s soon-to-open MFA in Fine Arts studios — to relocate nearby.
According to Gregg Rochman, one of the owners of 1512 Portland Ave. LLC, the entity that owns the building that housed the Faulkner Gallery, he is in final talks with a tenant who wants to move into the space on May 1.
“There’s no likelihood that it will sit empty,” Rochman said. “We already have multiple people asking about the availability of the space, and are already in talks with a user who would take up two-thirds of the building.”
Faulkner and Archambault anticipate a grand opening of their new gallery in July.