On the first Friday of every month, the city of Albuquerque hosts the ABQ Art Crawl in locations like Downtown, the Heights, Old Town, Nob Hill and North Valley. This past Friday, from 5 to 8 p.m., the Daily Lobo visited the Downtown event, located around Central Avenue and Sixth Street.

Decorating the streets of downtown, pop-up shops lined every sidewalk. One show was located at the Historic First National Bank. There, art pieces were showcased in an almost 100 year-old vault, as well as upstairs on the rooftop. 

One of the many artists at the Art Walk was Mark Vercammen, a photographer who had a gallery in the antique vault. His artworks used unconventional techniques like slightly diffusing the print in a dark room and using a silver gelatin print.

“Now everybody’s digital,” Vercammen said. “I shoot some digital too, but I love the traditional dark prints. They are rich, and they have more depth.” 

Some of the photographs in the gallery included a portrait of a man in Seattle, birds flying in the air and a text written in Old Italian. One of his photos is from Cinque Terre, Italy. 

“It means five lands, one of the small towns on the coast. No cars can get up to the town so you either walk or take a small train. If you ever get a chance to go to Cinque Terre, it’s beautiful, it’s amazing,” Vercammen said. 

Another gallery featured in this month’s Art Walk was Matrix Fine Art at 3812 Central Avenue. There, painter Brian T. Gonzales showcased some of his work, which included figurative paintings as well as scenics with mediums like oil and acrylics on canvas. 

“I got married in my early twenties and kind of moved away from art,” Gonzales said. “I was homeschooling my kids, then I started drawing again and developed a passion for it.” 

Some of Gonzales’ figurative paintings included a still of the three main characters of The Big Lebowski, a woman with a shopping cart, a man with a doll and a man pulling a rope. They all showcased a great amount of color, inspiring creativity. 

When asked what he would like to do in the future, he responded with murals, because of how great they are for cities. Gonzales says he wants to collaborate with one of his friends.

For artists of the Albuquerque community, the Art Walk offers local vendors a chance to exhibit and sell their work. More information on where to find shows and which locations are participating can be found online at artscrawlabq.org.

Lauren McDonald is a freelance reporter for the Daily Lobo. She can be contacted at news@dailylobo.com or on Twitter @lmcdonaldnews