Robert Walker, the owner of Gold Elite Jewelers, inside of the small gallery space adjacent the jewelry store earlier this month. | Shanel Romain/Village Free Press
Friday, September 30, 2016 || By COMMUNITY EDITOR || @maywoodnews
A west suburban artistic gem could be hiding in place sight, despite its affiliation with one of Broadview’s business staples — Gold Elite Jewelers, 2140 S. 17th Ave.
The jewelry store has been located on the corner of 17th Ave. and Roosevelt Rd. for nearly a decade. Owner Robert Walker runs a smooth ship.
“We’ve been in business for about 15 years and have been here for about nine years,” said Walker, who also serves as an associate pastor at Broadview Missionary Baptist Church, located just down the street from his business.
The spacious store is open and relaxed, with comfortable seating for customers to contemplate the store’s numerous offerings — from engagement and wedding rings to jewelry cleaning and small lending services.
But what’s perhaps less well known, however, is the gallery space adjacent the jewelry store, where the work of well-known Chicago area fine artist Rodney Wade (also known as The Idealist), among other talents, line the walls.
“My son is the one who really operates the gallery,” said Walker. “He and Rodney are really good friends. So, Rodney’s stuff is on display and so are other artists, who have their stuff up on consignment. We also host art shows and other events.”
Walker said the gallery space has been in existence for roughly a year and is more heavily used during holidays than at other times of the year.
Wade’s colorful, energetic abstractions are more than selling points. They create an ambience that make for great conversation and warm backdrops to live music.
“We don’t get much daily traffic,” Walker said, adding that a more intense marketing campaign might change that.
Marketing or no marketing, area art enthusiasts should learn about this museum-like nook on Roosevelt Road seemingly hidden from plain sight. Once inside, you’ll find a world that you may not want to leave. VFP
Bottom left, the work of Chicago artist Rodney Wade lines the walls of the gallery space adjacent Gold Elite Jewelers. The space also features the work of other artists.