Mid City Artisans owners George and Maria Harris. Photo by Ariana Allison.

Mid-City Artisans opens its doors this weekend

Beginning this weekend, a new venture inside Government Street’s Square 46 development aims to take full advantage of the heart of the arts district. Mid-City Artisans, founded by longtime neighborhood residents George and Maria Harris, includes the work of more than 60 local artists and makers. A grand opening is set for Friday, April 30, through Sunday, May 2, during which the space will offer live music, food, visits from artisans, classes, Mother’s Day gift ideas and more.

A set-up in progress as Mid-City Artisans prepared for its grand opening.

With “Meet the Artisans” sessions scheduled for the future, as well as classes for burgeoning creatives and partnerships with local schools, the Harrises hope to help make talent accessible to all.

“After I retired from being a business owner for 30 years, I was able to focus on my first passion: woodworking,” says George. “I had experience with craft shows and had been showing work at The Market at the Oasis for about a year, and all of that helped me realize two things about working as an artisan: one, you of course need to have a quality product, and two, you need to have consistency—a way to help people get to know you and increase your sales.”

After talking with other local artists, George and Maria—whose past career was as a school administrator—realized that Baton Rouge needed a venue where people could shop local products more regularly, as well as meet the people who create them. Thus, Mid-City Artisans was born.

“We’ve already reached out to several local art teachers to think about ways we can work together with high school students,” says Maria. “We’re adding more ideas all the time, but we really just wanted a place to support the arts and make them more accessible to people. Not just for sales, but for more constant exposure to all the amazing artists in the Baton Rouge community.”

To learn more and see which classes are already on the schedule, visit mid-cityartisans.com or check out the shop’s Instagram @midcityartisans.

Click on the photos in the gallery below for a closer look at the Mid-City Artisans space: