Bloom Gallery Boutique Features Old-School Nintendo Cool with Revenge of the 8-Bit

Reanna Diehl and the other artists of Bloom Gallery Boutique have their game faces on as they frantically prep the Downtown space for tomorrow night's First Friday artwalk.

At 6 p.m., the artists will press start on "Revenge of the 8-Bit" -- a Nintendo-themed art exhibition.

Paintings of Princess Zelda adorn the walls,  the bathroom's receiving a Super Mario Brothers mural and makeover, and an old school NES is being hooked up to a monitor.

Diehl says she wishes she could hit the pause button. "There always seems to be new ideas about what to include that are coming up at the last minute ... We have so many artists contributing to this show and they're all working hard to make it really epic."

Fifteen artists contributed artwork and apparel inspired by many of Nintendo's greatest hits, including Contra, Castlevania, and - of course - Super Mario Brothers.

Necklaces made from NES controllers by artist Skky Brown and hats featuring 1-Up mushrooms by Missconstrued will both be on sale. Paintings by McKenzie Baldock, Banding Hendrix, and Answer will hang from the walls. A raffle for prizes will also take place during the show's opening reception.

Theme shows have become the norm for Bloom; last month's First Friday featured an exhibition of Hello Kitty-inspired work.

"We got a great response to the Hello Kitty event and people really liked the idea of us doing themes," Diehl says. "We've all been big fans of Nintendo and are all huge gamers at heart, so this seemed like a cool idea."

The opening reception for "Revenge of the 8-Bit" is from 6 to 9 p.m. on Friday at Bloom Gallery Boutique, 812 North Third Street.

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