By Jessica Swanson
Photo by Todd Gunderson
Last September, an art gallery Vancouver was looking for opened on West Ninth Street. Lincoln’s Gallery, born by local alternative folk band Lincoln’s Beard, is fresh and laid back. You won’t find framing or art supplies here – you may not even find the doors open, but when they are, feel free to sit on the couch, nurse a bottle of water and soak up the Renaissance aesthetic of its owners, Tyler Morgan, Kris Chrisopulos and Dwayne Spence.
Kris is an art teacher at Prairie High School, while Tyler teaches history in Camas. Dwayne is long a music promoter in the Vancouver area and an artist who has shown in other venues. In the band, Tyler plays trumpet, keys, glockenspiel, mandolin and sings; Kris plays guitar and sings; and Dwayne plays bass, banjo and sings back-up. The band has one full-length record, Our American Cousin, and will soon be releasing another.
“There aren’t too many relationships you have where you can do something like this,” said Tyler.
Tyler and Kris have no experience running a gallery and say they had no loftier intentions than creating a space where they could play, practice and hang friends’ art, as well as their own. But they are already booking months out and have shown local artists such as Reid Trevarthen, Selfless Creations, Anni Becker, Mitch Tarbutton and James Jacob. While Tyler said most of the off-the-street inquiries are about the coin shop next door, the first opening was shoulder-to-shoulder people. The band plays at each opening and uses the space primarily to practice.
Kris said the concept for the gallery came together organically, and stays together because people keep supporting them. He said it was something “I’d like to see in the place where I live.”
Artists and friends sometimes volunteer to keep open hours for the gallery – otherwise it’s open on First Fridays, other Fridays from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. and by appointment.
The gallery fronts a space leased by fellow artist Brian Ripp, owner of Divergent Clothing.
“Brian has been a great influence,” said Kris, who collaborates with him on artwork. Kris said running a gallery and working with other artists inspires him to stay in the studio.
“From the art standpoint, I have produced more art than I ever have,” said Kris. And he added, “if somebody backs out, it’s up to you to fill the wall.”
106/108 W. Ninth St., Vancouver