Creative Global Network for the Visual Arts

Antique Stores Become Art Galleries on Queen St West in Toronto

Joe Clement from Passion for the Past Antiques holds a Lorraine Glass Co hand blown red glass centerpiece as he tells Rob Campbell of Dumpdiggers his plans to liquidate his bricks & mortar store in favour of a new online only address. On the computer a man can succeed by using his brains and knowledge of obscure antiques that are beautiful.

The westernmost extension of Queen Street has always been Toronto's antiques ghetto. The used furniture stores and repair shops here were once the exception in a half block of solid antiques stores. And most of these merchants have sold antiques and collectibles for about thirty or forty years... but their day is done. The sun is setting on the antiques ghetto.

An interesting thing is happening. The condos downtown don't need nic-nacks or Victorian junk, and they do need art for the walls, and space age vertical furniture that accentuates small spaces.

So the antiques stores are becoming art galleries and coffee shops and cafes that are filled with art for sale. Its a good model and it works because of the foot traffic in the area with the advent of even more condominiums on King St west and Lakeshore Queensway.

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