Here, today I have gone to another gallery. One that I noticed randomly while I was walking through the main shopping mall of Valmiera. And that´s an uneasy start.
Set in the fourth and last floor of the shopping mall, surrounded by clothes shops, we can find AijaStudio, a small space, quite small actually. But fine for expose and it fulfils a gallery´s aim which is showing an artist´s work, no matter his/her career or experience. AijaStudio fulfils this aim after all.
But on the other hand there´s that it´s a small space, enough for a single artist exposition, but still small. Worse, the location: a shopping mall. It´s not strange to see galleries or exposition spaces on shopping spaces or similar commercial buildings (notice how many galleries are booming with a bar space as well, to make the ordinary visits more common) but, as I think, are not the best areas. Still, it can give the chance to unexpected people (like it has happened to me) to find out a singular space in his/her routine: you are buying clothes for the next season and then the next area it´s a gallery of art! unexpected, isn´t it?
Keeping with the location, which is the main problem and after all, it´s why this article is written; the gallery it´s in the fourth floor of the shopping mall, the last floor! so it´s not a place that you will find in the first sight you make in the mall. This leads to a more troublesome thing, as it can be completely unknown for many people who ignores the existence of another artistic space in the town...in a never suspected place such the core of the main shooping mall.
There´s not too much to offer but perphaps moving the gallery to the ground level of the shopping mall rather than in the deep fourth level, I suggest. Or could be also marked somewhere about the existence of the gallery: such in those signs in the shopping mall right in the stairs where you can see what´s in the next level. At least that. So the gallery is not so forgotten and ignored (which I believe it is).
The good thing, is that being in a shopping mall with all access avaliable, you have working lifts and mechanic stairs working all time, so the physical accesibility it´s the least of the problems in this case.