Fresno Beehive

This Tower District art space is closing, but it won’t be gone for long

On Wednesday, Mia Studio and Gallery announced it would be closing. The Tower District art gallery and performance space operated behind the coffee shop The Revue.
On Wednesday, Mia Studio and Gallery announced it would be closing. The Tower District art gallery and performance space operated behind the coffee shop The Revue.

Back in September, the Tower District got The Revue back – sort of.

It wasn’t The Revue that had been a fixture on Olive Avenue for years, but a new, updated coffee shop (with the old name) run by the owners of the ice cream shop Ampersand and Lanna Coffee. The coffee shop’s back room was separated from the rest and operated as an art/performance space called Mia Studio & Gallery. It hosted paint parties, open mic nights and other types of performances.

Until this week.

On Wednesday, owners Wendy and Mark DeRaud announced they would be closing Mia Studio and Gallery.

“It has been over 4 years since we took over the Revue and the ‘Back Room.’ Though it proved to be a challenging venture for us and our family, it truly was a wonderful adventure for us in so many ways, mostly because of the community of people that we grew to know and love,” they wrote in a post on Facebook.

“We have decided to be artists and teachers again, and let The Revue continue to run the large venue through the double doors in back, and to make it what they want.”

What they want is an art/music/community space, similar to what the DeRauds had running, says Jeff Bennett, one of the owners at The Revue. So, the space will continue to operate as such, separate from the coffee shop, he says.

The space won’t have any sort of regular hours; instead it will be available for different types of events throughout the day.

Bennett envisions exercise or yoga classes in the morning, company parties or business meeting in the afternoons (Fresno’s Apple store is already booked for the new year) and performance art and concerts in the evenings. The space’s open mic night will continue on Mondays and the space will still serve as a venue for this year’s Rogue Festival, Bennett says. They are looking into screening films (a hot cocoa and movie night for the family, perhaps) and will remain a stop on ArtHop nights.

“It’s going to be almost-an-everything space,” Bennett says.

As for the DeRauds, they will continue to host paint parties, art classes and art therapy groups, “as doors open and opportunities present themselves,” according to the Facebook post. You can find out more information on Mark DeRaud’s Facebook page, or at www.markderaudartist.com.

Joshua Tehee: 559-441-6479, @joshuatehee

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