Velvet da Vinci Goes Digital

Velvet da Vinci Goes Digital

Velvet da Vinci storefront

Velvet da Vinci has been in operation for 26 years.

©2017 Google

San Francisco’s Velvet da Vinci will close July 1, owner Mike Holmes has announced, saying he plans to continue and expand the online presence of the gallery in lieu of its brick-and-mortar location. For 26 years, the influential jewelry gallery drew national talent and attention, well-regarded for putting the spotlight on the innovative work of its featured artists.

Brigitte Martin, president-elect of the Society of North American Goldsmiths and creator of the Crafthaus blog, said Holmes’ “enthusiasm for our art form was unwavering.”

The decision, Holmes says, was a step toward spending more time with his elderly parents. “What I was finding over the last six months or so, was that it was hard to do day-to-day stuff with Velvet da Vinci and help them at the same time.”

Holmes is philosophical about the transition. “One door closes, and then another opens,” he says.

The gallery owner plans to use Velvet da Vinci’s growing online presence to showcase things in the field that interest him, revisit past exhibitions, and more – citing a previous show, “Ferrous,” as a successful foray into online exhibitions. “The work was amazing. How we promoted the show on Facebook and Crafthaus was a model of how galleries can operate online in a changing world. People can experience exhibitions in lots of different ways,” he says.

Another upcoming project involves partially recreating a 2013 exhibition, “La Frontera (The Borderlands),” in New York next year. “La Frontera” explores the politically charged border between the United States and Mexico, and remains one of Holmes’ proudest shows from Velvet da Vinci history. “It’s a more significant exhibition now than three years ago when I had it,” he says.

A party to celebrate the closing of Velvet da Vinci will take place on Saturday, June 3, 2017, from 5 to 9 p.m.