Grass Valley, CA, October 23, 2020 – Grass Valley-Nevada City Cultural District, led by Nevada County Arts Council and its partners, is inviting the community for an outdoor stroll on Friday November 6, in order to enjoy newly installed public art in otherwise empty storefronts in our downtown areas.

Artist Nancy Mintz can be found at 105 West Main Street, Grass Valley. Photo by Kial James

Eliza Tudor, Executive Director at the Council, says, “We’ve provided a list of locations in each downtown area, as well as a dynamic map to indicate which artist’s work is shown at which property – and this information is available at”

Nevada County Arts Council, together with both Chambers of Commerce and Grass Valley Downtown Association (GVDA), has been hard at work over the last couple of months to match vacant storefronts with participating artists. “It’s been an adventure, to say the least,” says Marni Marshall of GVDA. “Occupancy is an evolving situation, with owners of vacant properties keen to attract new tenants during dire times, yet also enthusiastic about welcoming amazingly creative displays that will attract businesses and make our storefronts beautiful.”

Shelly Covert at work prior to installation at the Alpha Building in Nevada City. Photo by Kial James

Similarly, in Nevada City, the Chamber of Commerce has needed to be creative about its approach. Gretchen Bond, Chair of the Chamber, says: “COVID has been devastating for our downtown businesses, and still we are able to keep our downtown areas looking beautiful – both for visitors and for residents. As you turn off Highway 49 and left onto Broad Street, you see what used to be an empty Alpha Building now displaying the most stunning installations, with Community Asian Theatre of the Sierra, the Nisenan and renowned artist Tahiti Pehrson all sharing one huge space.”

Jesse Locks, a current board member at Nevada City Chamber and Nevada County Arts Council, says: “A little further up on the left is where the Curly Wolf coffee shop used to be. Now, instead of a dark space, it’s illuminated by the work of April Durham and Bryan Gorrie, whose installation, ’Songs to Sing in Times of Sorrow,’ combines media with visual poetry and found objects as a gorgeous and surreal photomontage.”

On November 6th Nevada County Arts Council invites the community to take a moment to meet the artists in both cities whose work makes Grass Valley-Nevada City Cultural District shine out as a beacon during challenging times. Tudor says: “Between ten to fifteen artists and representatives from two vital community organizations, CATS and California Heritage Indigenous Research Project, will be situated outside our partner locations between 4-6pm on Friday, November 6th. Since this is a first initiative of its kind, we’re sure the public will want to enjoy the displays and ask questions. And, of course, we encourage wearing masks and while in conversation together.”

Jon Blinder, board chair for the Council, says: “It’s the collaboration between business owners and our creative community, and the Nevada County Arts Council and our Economic Resource Council and the County, which make our California Cultural District stand out. We thank our partners – including both Chambers and GVDA – for getting creative with us.”

Says Eliza Tudor, Executive Director at the Council, “We are grateful to both the County and the ERC for their support of our Art in Storefronts initiative. This investment will ensure that Grass Valley and Nevada City will each benefit from the maximum number of property and artist collaborations during this pilot phase.”

Artist finalists are Amanda Ganong & Julie Rose, Nancy Mintz, David King, April Durham & Bryan Gorrie, Community Asian Theatre of the Sierra, Shelly Covert for California Heritage Indigenous Research Project, Pamela Hodges, Tahiti Perhson, Shelby Via and Al Martinez.

Ruth Chase, project coordinator for Art in Storefronts, “As I’ve said before, I’m proud of our community and our incredible artists. These installations are one indicator of how important cross-sector partnerships can be during dark times.”

To complement Art in Storefront’s Opening Stroll on November 6th, Grass-Valley-Nevada City Cultural District’s partners are putting up specially branded flags as a symbol of resilience. Marshall says: “We’ve been waiting for just the right moment to share these with the public. With the fall season in full swing, and looking towards the holiday season, we could all use a bit of cheer, and these flags will show the world our downtown areas are open for business – safely, of course!”

  • WHO: Grass Valley-Nevada City Cultural District
  • WHAT: Art in Storefronts Opening Stroll
  • WHERE: Downtown Grass Valley and Nevada City
  • WHEN: Friday, November 6, 4:00PM–6:00PM
  • MAPS & INFO: