Mason art gallery plans second location in downtown Hamilton

The owner of Mason-based Pop Revolution Gallery plans to open a second gallery, custom framing, and art reproduction service center at 24 S. Second St., in a vacant building that already boasts a colorful mural.

Pop Revolution Gallery, 105 E. Main St. in Mason, has been open since 2008, and hosts a fine art gallery, custom framing and printing services, and a cooperative gallery all in the same historic building. Owner Francis Michaels said he was encouraged to open a second gallery after hearing about the positive movement toward art-related entities in Hamilton.

“One of the artists in our co-op lives in Hamilton … and she would talk up how it’s trying to rebuild its downtown area, so I thought it might be a good fit,” he said. He plans on signing the lease with the property’s owner this weekend, and begin work outfitting the space ahead of a tentative late March or early April opening.

Francis said he was driving around Hamilton looking for potential gallery homes, and he “really liked the look of that building” along South Second Street.

“I haven’t spent a lot of time in Hamilton since I’ve been in the Cincinnati area,” the New York native admitted. “But with all of the new art businesses opening there, I thought it would be a good idea to get in before everything is already open.”

On top of the gallery and printing and reproduction services, Francis plans to offer art classes and party options for birthdays and themes events such as Ladies’ Night. He also hopes to host national art competitions like the juried exhibition opening at the Mason location on Feb. 19 called “Tiny,” and possibly make the gallery similar to the co-op gallery Artist Lounge, where about 25 local artists of all mediums run and operate the gallery themselves, put on exhibits, and display their art. The cooperative gallery would tie in well with the Artspace Hamilton Lofts, where 42 live/work units will be filled with artists upon opening.

“Having that many artists in one particular area is definitely a plus,” he said.

He hopes to fill a void with his photo printing and custom framing services in the city, something that Hamilton artist Audra Shields will be happy to see. A member of Artist Lounge, Shields said she told Michael to look into moving to Hamilton as Artspace Hamilton Lofts, Renaissance Fine Arts, Unsung Salvage Company, and more art-related ventures prepare to open in late April or May.

“I hope (the location) is good for him,” she said. “It will be across from the (Hamilton Historic) farmer’s market on Saturdays … it seems like things are starting to turn around down there.”

More information on Pop Revolution Gallery can be found at poprevolutiongallery.com.

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