Nestled among chef-driven restaurants, nightlife hotspots, specialty stores, and more in The Blackstone District, Landlock Gallery is a creative haven that weaves itself seamlessly into the local-centric fabric of this historic neighborhood in midtown Omaha. It also offers a much-welcomed creative jolt (and shopping option) to the revitalized area.
Owner Molly Hobson Vaida, whose background includes work at local art institutions KANEKO and Joslyn Art Museum, opened Landlock during the COVID-19 pandemic. She was furloughed in March 2020, after which she took a few months off to consider next steps. “I finally decided if I wasn’t going to get a job, I was going to make my own job,” Molly recalled.
Landlock, which is not your typical art gallery, is divided into several areas: a gallery section, a makers shop with everything from apparel and jewelry to paper goods and graphic novels, a nook stocked with books and playthings for the kiddos, and a growing secondhand book library that works on the honor system.
Molly was inspired to make a difference in the lives of creatives who work and live here in Omaha. “I love working with new and emerging artists. They’re just so excited to be in a gallery space. They’re so passionate.” And to speak to that, during my visit a local artist stopped in to inquire about displaying and selling her art. Twenty minutes later, she left with a spot to sell her works–and a spring in her step. “I really do think that’s what artists give to Omaha, they bring out that creative spirit and make the community and more vibrant with their work.”
Molly’s passion shines through in every aspect of her work, from her optimistic Instagram posts where there is no shortage of exclamation points, to the warm and inviting feel of the space itself. “Every single person has a creative energy to them. And especially in times of stress and in times when we’re disconnected from other people, it’s so important to use that energy. And if you can use it to help other people and to help your community, it’s even better.” Landlock Gallery is the result of that creative energy–and we’re lucky Molly’s sharing it with Omaha.
For a closer look at Landlock, and to hear more from Molly, check out the above video.
For a look at Omaha’s unique art galleries, go to VisitOmaha.com.