More than an art gallery

As 1078 Gallery looks for a new home, it will need community support

The closure of the 1078 Gallery’s Broadway location at the end of May—the result of issues with the building’s owner over live music performances—is not just a blow to Chico’s art scene but to the entire community.

In addition to having provided an all-ages venue (a rarity in Chico) for art exhibits and performances that would otherwise not make it to Chico, the gallery is also a space for other community-minded groups to hold events. This is evident in its impressive programming during April, which included a half-dozen musical performances ranging from metal to hip-hop to classical guitar; a stand-up comedy show featuring local and touring performers; and a panel conversation about “fake news” with local media professionals hosted by Slow Theatre. The latter group regularly held theatrical readings and other events in the space, and the gallery also hosted events for Stonewall Alliance and Inspire School of Arts and Sciences, among other organizations, in 2017.

The arts are important to the vitality of the city for numerous reasons, including its economy and marketability (Chico still basks in its designation as a top-10 arts town in the country). The local arts scene, of which the gallery is a pillar, has proven to be a boon to the local economy—to the tune of $17.7 million a year, according to a study presented to the city in 2015 by the advocacy group Americans for the Arts. Despite the disappearance of city funding in recent years, local arts groups—thanks in large part to volunteers—continue to thrive.

As 1078 scrambles to find a new home, it undoubtedly will need community support. The time to help is now. There’s one final art show—a reception for Alma Mudder, a collection of recent works by former Chico State ceramics students, set for Friday (May 5)—and a couple of concerts left before the doors close. We encourage everyone who has enjoyed the 1078 Gallery’s contributions to Chico to go say goodbye to the space and give a little back so that its mission may continue.