For almost two decades, Michael Mulley’s College Street Gallery has been an Allentown staple. The cozy, white-walled space has played host to wine-soaked art openings that stretched late into the night, community celebrations that spilled out onto the Allen Street sidewalk and countless passers-by who stumbled into the space on their way to or from the neighborhood’s many watering holes and found something beautiful or surprising on the walls.
The defiantly egalitarian Mulley also made sure the gallery functioned as an entree to the Western New York art world for neophytes, giving many local artists their first taste of public exposure as part of co-op shows and other group exhibitions.
This week, the gallery will have its last hurrah as a neighboring restaurant prepares to expand into the space. And, as expected, it’s not going down without a party. Friday night during the Allentown First Fridays gallery crawl, the space will host a party from 6:30 to 11 p.m. (and possibly later) featuring music by Jeremy Spindler on the accordion and Carra Stratton on the hurdy gurdy. Inside, work by some two dozen local artists will be on view through Aug. 8.
Mulley also is planning several days of celebration leading up to the closing, with live music nightly from Wednesday through Aug. 8. Call 868-8183 for more info.
– Colin Dabkowski