District Gallery at the Van Aken District

Anna wears a Mary green dress by Frank & Eileen unbuttoned over an Ilia black crop top by Apiece Apart and Kate Eames jeans, all from Ladder; Clare V fanny pack is from Double Rainbow; shoes by Vintage Havana are her own. Marianne wears a Kamryn floral applique top by Veronica Beard and L’AGENCE Margot jeans from Kilgore Trout; Bluma Project colorful bracelets are from Double Rainbow; colorful wedges by Kate Spade are her own. | Photo / Casey Rearick

By Amanda Koehn

Turn onto Walker Road within the Van Aken District, and you’ll easily be drawn into the bright and contemporary District Gallery, an art space that opened in 2019. 

The gallery showcases a mix of local, national and international artists making work in a variety of media. For Carolina Kane, a District Gallery artist and the gallery’s manager, it’s important that the gallery be approachable. While art galleries can sometimes seem intimidating to the passerby, District Gallery wants to be inviting and to help educate, she says. 

“We are an educational space to share ideas, to educate about the artwork, techniques, stuff like that, and getting people passionate about art,” she says. “I am an artist, some of my employees are artists as well, and as artists we love sharing information about other artists. … I feel like our job is to close the gap between artwork and clients. So we act as this great conversational middle ground for all of that to happen.”

Among upcoming happenings at District Gallery, artist Neill Wright will visit from South Africa for a solo show this July. District Gallery represents a range of artists and also shows work by some new to the gallery, Kane says. 

The gallery was opened by owners Richard Uria, a member of the 2020 class of Cleveland Jewish News “18 Difference Makers,” the late Bob Roth, who passed away April 24, and Karen Chaikin. 

It has since started working with companies on curating artwork for their spaces, which Kane cites as one of her favorite parts of her job. She’s heard feedback that works selected for businesses have helped improve their companies’ culture. 

District Gallery also does residential projects and digital placements ahead of purchasing artwork, where potential buyers can try out pieces virtually in their spaces to see how they fit and feel.  

“We have grown incredibly since opening,” Kane says. “Both of the owners really didn’t anticipate that we were going to get this big, which is very exciting.”

The gallery is at 20076 Walker Road.

See more photos and fashion from the Van Aken District.

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