Michelle Delaney has seen this all before.
She came onboard 111 Minna Gallery when the area around Yerba Buena Gardens would at certain parts of the day resemble a ghost town.
Things changed slowly over the 20-plus years since, and the neighborhood bustled with life and energy, thanks in large part to the growth of downtown San Francisco’s tech sector and the proliferation of new high-rise housing. But the shutdown induced by the global pandemic brought it all to a screeching halt.
“This is how it used to be. There wasn’t a lot going on down here,” said Delaney, the president and owner of the gallery.
But Delaney is confident things will liven up again soon, and says 111 Minna Gallery is ready to do its part to draw back foot traffic to the neighborhood. She notes that things have improved significantly since the state reopened in mid-June.“It’s been nice seeing people again, the old Minna community coming by,” she said.
The gallery had a soft opening with virtual exhibitions for Olympia Altimir’s L’enfant Sauvage and Gooch’s Revamp! Their art will be on display at the gallery through mid-August.
Delaney has been busy working on events, including a live music and comedy show in the Minna alleyway for the fall. 111 Minna Gallery
participated in Yerba Buena Day 2021 on Aug. 19, a full day of events co-sponsored by such neighborhood fixtures as the Yerba Buena
Gardens Festival, the Contemporary Jewish Museum, the Museum of the African Diaspora and various restaurants.
“It was our first ‘We’re Back” event,” Delaney said.
Like most businesses, the gallery made some adjustments during the pandemic by increasing its online presence with live stream events and online exhibitions.
Additionally, Delaney has gotten in touch with other art groups and businesses – including the Yerba Buena Museums Roundtable, Bar
Alliance and San Francisco Venue Coalition — for possible future collaborations.
“I joined every possible group there is during the pandemic,” she said.
For more information, visit 111minnagallery.com.