Elsewhere Collaborative – Greensboro, North Carolina - Atlas Obscura

Greensboro, North Carolina

Elsewhere Collaborative

Art museum based around the collections accumulated over 58 years by one eccentric thrift store owner. 

The Elsewhere Collaborative is a non-profit museum located in downtown Greensboro, NC. The museum is built on one woman’s (Sylvia Gray) collection of objects and materials while she ran a thrift store for 58 years (1939-1997) in the same space that museum now inhabits.

Upon Sylvia’s death in 1997 the store was left in chaotic state of disarray with objects piled to the ceiling. Rather then throwing it all out and installing something new, Sylvia’s grandson and local artist George Scheer took it upon himself to begin organizing the objects and space into a place that both honored Sylvia’s collection and memory and gave the space a new life as an arts organization, one inspired by the place and objects themselves. The space was renamed “Elsewhere” and artists that work and play there refer to themselves as Elsewherians.

Nothing is for sale, nothing leaves, but artists are invited into the museum in the form of residencies to work with, alter, and create new meaning out of the permanent collection amassed by Sylvia. From the disassembled piano and miscellaneous instruments (titled “Super Piano Bouncy Ball”) to a massive clothing installation by Miami-based artists Guerra de la Paz, Elsewhere has a massive collection of both intriguing objects and intrigue installations made from those objects, all worth discovering.

They also offer a 5$ dinner made in the Elsewhere kitchen from locally grown food for their members every Thursday.

Update: As of 2016 the museum is under renovation to allow for needed updates to the older building.  It will reopen August 3rd, 2016.

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