Cecy's Gallery & Studios DURHAM NC
My passion is making art and making art accessible. I started making jewelry to support myself when I came to the U.S. from Mexico.
At the same time, I started leading jewelry-making workshops with women in domestic violence recovery. We created a jewelry group, kind of like the old quilting bees. It allowed women to talk, network, and build a skill that could allow them to become financially independent.
Through that work, I learned the power of unlocking your inner creativity and witnessed the mental-health benefits of working with your hands.
After moving to Durham, I began selling my jewelry at Vega Metals, where I also worked as gallery manager. In 2008, I organized the first Saturday morning Art Market at Vega Metals (now Art Market Durham).
The Art Market has been a springboard for many local artists to go from working from home to having a real brick and mortar business, or to having their artwork be their sole source of income. It has generated strength in Durham’s economy and enriched our local art scene.
In 2018, I learned that the Vega Metals building would be used for other purposes, and that I would need to move to continue my jewelry business and the Art Market.
I decided to make this my opportunity to create something special.
The new Cecy’s Gallery & Studios is housed in the massive space that was Cole’s Transmission Shop. It is not only a home for my jewelry designs, but also exhibits Cricket Forge (formerly Vega Metals) items, promotes the work of dozens more local artists, offers three large working studios, holds classes, and hosts events promoting arts and entrepreneurship. Best of all, the Art Market, which has a 10-year history in Durham Central Park, is able to continue with no disruption or relocation.
Cecy’s is a new vision for an art space that is wide open and full of love, life, and music. Preserving an existing Durham building on the corner of Foster and Hunt, Cecy's houses artist studios, classes, events, community gatherings, and a gallery. All of these programs encourage Durhamites to come together and make local art accessible and fun.