Keisha Denee Whatley’s up-and-coming Art Bar Cafe in Germantown is thriving off of your support.
Emerging in the heart of Germantown is the Art Bar Cafe, an up-and-coming event space taking the place of Swain’s Accounting at 6228 Germantown Avenue. Partnered with the African American Chamber of Commerce and the Germantown Historical Society, the Art Bar has already attracted attention on Facebook, from a post from Keisha Denee Whatley, owner of Custom Arts Studio and the Art Bar Cafe.
“It’s been a personal mission of mine for over three years,” says Whatley.
The Cafe came as a way for Whatley to give back to Germantown with a creative hub and post-COVID social spot for artists in the neighborhood, serving as a four-in-one social spot. Along with a cafe, holding baked goods, coffees, teas, and smoothies, the venue also holds a retail space, featuring work from artisans in Philly. The top floor provides an event space and community arts program while the basement stands as a commercial space for rent.
To add to all of this, the Art Bar will serve artist studios for rent, available individually or in a dorm-style set up with a roommate.
“The plan is to create jobs and support artists in the community,” says Whatley. “With the exception of Uncle Bobbie’s, there are limited resources like this in Germantown.”
With the gentrification of the area, Whatley believes a venue, topped with a roof deck and studio space for artists is just what Germantown needs. The Art Bar Cafe is currently in construction, assisted by a GoFundMe to finance the project. The future of the new venue comes with programs offering perks such as free studio space for the year and programs for students interested in entrepreneurship. With support, the Art Bar Cafe plans will be a friendly neighborhood addition to Germantown’s growing community.