Celebrating Art, Education, and Community
By Adelin Zegstroo
It doesn’t look like much from the outside, just a simple brown building, but The Other Side hosts a wealth of knowledge. Not the knowledge that can be found in a library, hidden in a mountain of books, but the knowledge of people dedicated to sharing what they have to offer. In the simplest of definitions, The Other Side is a community. Founded in 2007 by Orin and Kim Domenico, The Other Side serves as host to a local art gallery and a multitude of community events. From lectures and environmental discussions, to the arts and Western wisdom traditions, The Other Side has something for everyone. “We just started adding programs,” said co-founder and owner Kim Domenico. “Sometimes people in the community would want to start something; [The Other Side] is a starting place for [these] things. I always encourage basically anything people want to do… but through the arts.” Over the twelve years that it has been open, The Other Side has and continues to host yoga classes, poetry sessions, community lectures, jazz shows, and many other events. Every month the artwork changes and another local artists is given a chance in the spotlight.
From the perspective of a college student who didn’t grow up in Utica, The Other Side is a sanctuary from the stress and hassle of everyday life. It offers a chance to unwind and meet new people. The atmosphere is beyond welcoming. While interviewing Kim I realized what a special place The Other Side is to so many people. In a world that never stops, it’s important to have a place to be still; The Other Side is this place. Community has always been something of great value to me. To find somewhere in Utica where I instantly felt welcomed has been a huge blessing. If it’s not already obvious, Kim and Orin Domenico care a lot about community. This passion carries into The Other Side. “We think of it as our art and we’d like to think others feel the same way.” If you’re interested in art or education then check out The Other Side. Another important part of The Other Side is that its a non-profit. Kim and Orin care about bringing art and education to up-town Utica. By making The Other Side non-profit they open it up to anyone and everyone. Next time you have a spare evening, stop by and join The Other Side in celebrating art, education, and community!