Monthly Archives: February 2009

Last Week: David Lloyd Stewart

Last week in February means it’s the last week we will have David Lloyd Stewart as our featured artist. I have finally taken photos of a few pieces of his beautiful jewelry to share with you all. If you get the chance, stop in and see his work in person, it’s well worth the trip!

"Angel" pendant; silver, gold, amethyst, rainbow moonstone, carved pink mussel shell face - $2,200

"Angel" pendant; silver, gold, amethyst, rainbow moonstone, carved pink mussel shell face - $2,200


"Frog in the Rain" pendant; silver, gold, cat's eyes, faustite lily pads on handmade silver chain - $1,800

"Frog in the Rain" pendant; silver, gold, cat's eyes, faustite lily pads on handmade silver chain - $1,800


Intimate Concert Series Starts Tonight!

Starting tonight, we are hosting a series of concerts here at the gallery that we are calling the “Intimate Concert Series”. It’s an intimate concert because there is only room for an audience of around 25-30 people. The music will usually be a solo performer. Tonight’s performance is by Vernon DeAguero, a Nuevo Flamenco guitarist from Santa Fe. His guitar playing his absolutely wonderful! Tickets are only $10 at the door. Concert starts at 7 pm.

One of the best things about this new concert series is that with such a small audience, you will have a chance to speak directly with the musician, ask questions, and hear their stories on a personal level. Think of it like a house concert, only, it’s in a gallery! In coming months we will have local singer/songwriters like Matt Jones and Kimo. Next month we actually have TWO concerts! Chad Cavanaugh, a singer/songwriter from San Diego, will be swinging by the gallery for a special show on March 14th. For more information, call Aaron Lewis at 908-1392.

Top 10 Reasons to Invest in Art (Bad Economy or Not!)

As a professional artist and gallery owner, I am getting sick and tired of hearing people say that art is a great investment, during GOOD times. Why only during good times? Good times or bad, art is a GREAT investment. I once read a quote that said “During good economic times, people collect art, but during bad economic times, people invest in art”. I wish I could remember where and when I read this so I could credit the person who said it. The point is, art is not just a luxury item, it IS an investment. Record auction sales in past years, paintings selling for millions of dollars is evidence of this. Now, some will say, paintings by dead artists, sure! However, can you imagine being the person who bought that $100-5,000 painting from a living artist (think Vincent Van Gogh, who only sold ONE painting during his lifetime!) to someday turn around and sell it at auction for millions of dollars? Sure, it took decades for that appreciation to occur, but what better inheritance to leave your children?! I’m not good with math, but you don’t need to be a financial wizard to figure out that it’s an awesome return on investment. Remember too, every artist will eventually die! (Actually, I think Salvador Dali thought he was immortal and he would live forever!)

In my research for this post, I read The Economic Importance of the Arts & Cultural Industries in Albuquerque… report presented by the UNM Bureau of Business and Economic Research. According to this report, “Arts and cultural industries generate $1.2 billion in revenues, $413 million in wages, and 19,500 jobs, totaling
6% of all employment in the County”(Bernalillo county, NM). This report goes on to say,
“Arts and culture, once considered luxuries that follow prosperity,
are now understood to be conditions of prosperity.
Yes, art and culture are big business and among the fastest
growing sectors of the economy, but their economic importance
extends far beyond the value of their receipts. Today, a vibrant
art and cultural sector is crucial to attracting and retaining a
talented labor force and creating an environment conducive to
innovation. In this sense, the rich and distinctive cultures of
cities such as San Francisco, Seattle, Austin, and Boulder are
not so much evidence of these cities’ economic prosperity as
they are factors that give rise to it.”
What I get from this is, art is a good investment because art is what MAKES a city good.

So, here are my top 10 reasons why it is ALWAYS a good time to invest in art;

10. Artists need to eat too! (Let’s just get over the starving artist myth! No artist goes into the arts wanting to starve! Art is a BUSINESS, I spend only 40%, maybe less, of my time actually painting)

9. Art can brighten your life, who doesn’t need their life brightened during times like this?

8. Artists have to pay their bills too! (I would be interested to know how many artists have defaulted on their home loans or had their car repossessed since the recession began.)

7. Emerging artist’s work will hold value or go UP in value, good idea to buy art from an artist BEFORE their prices go up.

6. Buying art from local artists puts money back into your local economy. (Artists spend money too. See #10 and #8)

5. Art makes your house a home. Even if it doesn’t match your couch!

4. ANY art you buy today is automatically a piece of history. (Of course, I suggest you wait a few years before you take it to the Antiques Roadshow.)

3. Art can inspire greatness! 

2. Supporting artists by purchasing their work keeps service jobs open for teenagers and retirees!

And the #1 reason to invest in art (drum roll please!), ARTISTS NEED TO EAT TOO! Yes, I said it twice! (Let’s just get over the starving artist myth already, serious artists work more than overtime on their careers and SHOULD be taken seriously. Being an artist IS a business! As with everything, it’s just a few artists that give the rest of us a bad name.)

Disclaimer: While this post was meant as a serious look at why you should invest in art (bad economy or not), parts of it were also done tongue in cheek and should not be taken too seriously! Now go buy some original art from a LIVING artist! 🙂

Late Night First Friday at Chroma Studios Gallery

Last week’s First Friday Opening at Chroma Studios Gallery was a huge hit! We had a wonderful show with featured artist, David Lloyd Stewart, and added a few new artists to our gallery roster.

Paula Manning-Lewis with David Lloyd Stewart

Letitia Hill rounded out David’s jewelry selection with her gorgeous beaded creations.

Cindi Gaudette is an amazing abstract painter. Very humble, with a contagious smile and laugh, she was a joy to be around.

Justin Simenson (Imagination Included Photography) is one of our newest photographers along with Julie Rybachek.

Another new Chroma artist, Susanne Baca, didn’t make it to the opening, but her mosaics made up for missing presence with their whimsical beauty. Jacqui Lewnes also made an appearance and posed with her new print, Josh & Tyler Cutlefish 2.

We had visits from Duke City Fix moderator, Spring Griffin (who will soon become an official Chroma Studio Artist), and the ever popular Vashti (exactly how many people in Albuquerque does Vashti know? Or possibly a better question, how many people doesn’t she know?).

 Aaron played some wonderful tunes from his new cd, Space Travel

It’s now official, Chroma Studios Gallery is the late night place to be! Apparently, we are the only First Friday gallery open after 9pm. 10pm to be exact, even though I don’t think we left until after 11 pm! We were having far too much fun!

Next up at Chroma Studios? Our first monthly Intimate concert, Third Friday, February 20th with Nuevo Flamenco guitarist, Vern DeAguero. Concert starts at 7 pm, tickets are only $10. Contact Aaron Lewis for more information.