City Paper is not for tourists
Once upon a time, Bethesda had aspirations of becoming a serious arts hub. But Gallery Neptune, Heineman-Myers Contemporary Art, and Osuna Gallery have all deserted the affluent suburb over the past two years. The tipping point may have come in March with the shuttering of the Fraser Gallery, which had occupied a prime Wisconsin Avenue space since the early days of the Bethesda arts push. Fraser, owned by Catriona Fraser, was a noted outpost of figurative painting, glass works, photography, and art from Cuba. Its crisp, airy space was salvaged as a nonprofit gallery rented by the month. It’s too soon to judge the new gallery’s worthiness, but it booked figurative bronze sculptor Mark Kramer for October and in November hosted contemporary art group show called “NYC NOW.” The show displayed “artists living in and around Manhattan.” Symbolic, no?