As spring settles in, I have been drawn outside more and more, this week I headed to Hyde Park, where Laura Schaeffer is preparing to open her second Op Shop. Laura's Op Shops start as vacant store fronts or businesses that she transforms into creative retail spaces. With the help of local artists and visionaries Laura will be offering a space for artists and community members to come together and teach, learn, witness and connect, as well as buy, sell, display and observe. This sort of balance is not easy to maintain, but seeing as Laura is also the owner of the Home Gallery, and hanging the beautiful shows she has at Home, definitely qualifies her to make this an absolute success.
Her artistic eye scans everything as it comes together, artists run a muck in the 3,000 sq ft space of 1530 E 53rd st., and Laura takes pictures and so she is sure to recount the process. In the short time I was there I found out that the space, built in the 30s, was a Walgreen's, a Kroch's and Brentano's bookstore, and a Hollywood Video, but according to a project being done for the Op Shop, the most influential incarnation of the space was the Hyde Park Federal Savings and Loan. Although Laura is directing the resurrection of the Op Shop for Saturdays opening I would like express that this is an evolving space, the item and projects within the space will alter and grow throughout it's existence, which will be until, at least, May 1st.
1530 East 53rd Street
Opening Reception: March 27th, 6-10 PM
Open Wednesday through Sundays 11:00 AM - 7:00 PM
Closing Celebration: May 1st, 6 - 10 PM