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FINE ARTS BUILDING

The FINE ARTS BUILDING, 3228 Euclid Ave., with its studios and living quarters for artists, musicians, and writers, was once considered the center of art community in Cleveland. The Fine Arts Bldg. traces its history to 1921 and 1922, when additions were made to the front and rear, respectively, of the former JOHN H. DEVEREAUX mansion (which had been built in 1873). Many of the home's original features remained intact behind the new 2-story brick facade, which featured bas-relief sculpture. Briggs and Nelson was the architect, and the work was done for the Fine Arts Realty Co., whose president was Abram A. Kalish.

The Fine Arts Bldg. provided studio space for art, drama, and dance teachers. Sky-lit studios as well as living quarters were available. More than 21 different arts and allied industries were represented in the 1920s. MAX KALISH and ABEL G. WARSHAWSKY were but two of the artists who rented space there. A newsletter, the Cleveland Fine Arts News, was published from at least 1923 to 1924. The building was occupied by artists, musicians, and writers through the 1940s. Reflecting the postwar changes on Euclid Ave., in the 1950s and 1960s occupancy declined to 50%. By the 1970s artists had almost entirely left this location. Still functioning as a retail and residential structure in 1995, the Fine Arts Bldg. served as the home of the Fine Arts Food Center, while most of the mansion's rooms were rented out to boarders.