40 Below is a group that is making a difference in the city of Syracuse, NY. Of course, anyone over forty thinks it’s a stupid name, lol. I remember when they started the group – I was already not the target audience. The point was to get the younger generations – were they Generation Xers then? I can’t remember – to stay here. To remain in Syracuse following graduation from college. Most people who grew up here wanted to move anywhere else and I would imagine getting a downstate New Yorker to want to live life in this slower lane is a bit of a tough sell.
And I can’t blame them, as I did it myself for a time, moving to Florida when I was in my twenties.
So yeah, it was/is a task force established to improve the arts culture and promote Syracuse as a happening cool place to live. Syracuse, New York is more of a sports-town. I think the world pretty much knows that via the amount of people we can get to go to the Carrier Dome for a college hoops game in 23 below zero weather (more than 30,000). It’s definitely an astonishing feat by any stretch of the imagination. The arts are always just short of emerging and it is funny (read: sad) how most successful Syracuse artists are finding their success elsewhere.
Our most famous artist is Carrie Mae Weems. She lives here but rarely shows her work here. There was that Everson Museum of Art exhibition, but other than that she is strictly a grant recipient and sells in New York City.
But 40 Below keeps trying and I commend them for it. I attended their most recent pop-up art exhibition. Last year’s coincided with Winterfest activities. This year the one night only event happened on Tuesday, February 23, 2016 from 5 pm – 8 pm at the Redhouse Art Center, 201 S. West Street, Syracuse, NY 13202.
All local artists were invited to exhibit by dropping off a piece at the Point of Contact gallery across the street. I did not participate since the time for drop off was the exact time I was buying my new car from the Fox-Honda dealership in Auburn, NY.
My friend Penny Santy participated, as did my Facebook friends Charlie Sam and Renee Fair. In attendance were a lot of artsies over forty. I mean, I didn’t see many or any twenty-somethings. But it was a decent-sized crowd, and it was a lot of fun!
Not sure if anyone sold anything, but manifesting exhibitions sometimes leads to sales down the line so it’s all good. You just never know when the next opportunity will present itself. I know my friend Angela connected with some people about a possible new art venture and we all enjoyed the carrot sticks and dip, wine and cheese spread.
If you’ve never been to an art reception – there is always free food and wine.
Not sure when the next event will take place. I am sure 40 Below would welcome your support! Here are some links to find out more about this organization –