In our historic neighborhood we have an alley. In the late 1800’s alleys served many purposes. Kids played 'stick ball" in them, neighbors called to neighbors across them, incinerators burned trash and leaves there. They were also primarily made for the delivery of goods by horse drawn wagons. Our back alley building served as a shed for the coal hauler to deliver his black chunks by horse wagon for the coal furnaces around town. Today that shed is a miniature art gallery called “Gallery O”.
Recently we had our sixth “sort’a annual” alley party there for friends and the neighborhood. We do this as a way of getting to know our neighbors, catching up with the friends and creating a community of people that wave to each other. It just seemed like a good idea a while back. In the old days people would sit on their front porches every day at dusk and ‘shoot the breeze’ with whoever walked by. It was particularly popular on Sunday evenings. It is what people used to do back before the media took over our lives and made us all shut ins watching the evening news instead of the light glancing off the Flatiron rocks over the city here.
For the party we block off our alley and put out furniture, tables, chairs, rugs, lamps, a big tent we that doubles as a ‘Play Sail” kite, ping pong tables, banners and whatever else we can find to make this most communal space comfortable and fun for a summer evening. People bring food, drinks, a friend, a story, a song, a game or…. “a horse” ...this year’s theme. We open our studio and show kids films in the “Alley Cat Theater”, and, this year, had a show at our Gallery O called “The Horse Show” and invited children, artists and non artists to bring something with a horse in it. Many of neighbors and friends brought works on or about horses. Our next door neighbor even brought three real horses to the delight of everyone, especially the children. There were two miniature ponies for petting and one riding pony whose owner walked the wide eyed riders around the block on.
Half a Horse - Sandy Hale
Capriole - Pam Capozolla
Light Horse - Melanie Walker + George Peters
Light Horse 3 - Melanie Walker + George Peters
Scorpio Rising - Sherry Hart
Italian Stallions - Melanie Walker
Eye Chart - Melanie Walker
Chance - Sherry Hart
Lukas Bachmann - age 8
Horse Hinge - collection of Joanne Grillo
Rocking Horse Toy - collection of Peters+Walker
Galloping News - George Peters
Richard Block - collection of Joanne Grillo
Horse & Moon - Carol Bachmann
Blue Horse - Melanie Walker
Trojan Horse - Oliver Hart - age 8
Sanjay wearing the Horse Head