A New Eclectic Art Gallery: Artist Dreams in Ashland
Welcoming and multifarious, Artist Dreams in Ashland is already working on big projects with big artists. They had a soft holiday opening in December where the public came to enjoy d’oeuvres and champagne surrounded by art from locals in the Rogue Valley and throughout the world. The gallery is planning an official opening in February, featuring legendary drummer Steve Smith from the rock band Journey, whose exhibit is titled “The Fabric of Rhythm.”
“It’s not his debut, it will be us debuting him here at this location,” an organizer of the gallery Ananda Coniff clarifies. Smith’s pieces available for purchase are the only ones produced. There’s no mass production of this series, making them incredibly exclusive and valuable.
As for the gallery as a whole, Coniff simply says the place is “eclectic. Art is such an emotional experience, so we sort of feel our way through. The art pieces are anywhere from replicas of famous artists, and we have some that we consider decorative art. We also have very modern pieces as well.”
Art Director Chris Hartman poses the question: “Not everybody is making $200,000 a year, so what about the people on a budget? You can buy a ring for thirty dollars, or you can a ring for $10,000. And I got everything in between.”
Hartman has been in the art business for over 20 years and understands what an art appreciator is looking for when he visits a gallery.
“We’re in touch with artists from all over around the world,” he says. He also owns an art gallery in Las Vegas called Ra Art. Much of what he’s procured and learned he’s brought to Ashland to create a truly diverse gallery.
Each wall is dedicated to an artist. Steve Smith, for example, will have a centrally located wall for his exhibit. It will showcase his light-drumsticks photography as well as a book containing the artwork and his own words about each piece.
The adjacent wall will be for local artists. The first local artist to occupy this wall is Andrea Garfield’s colorful and often sold out angel pieces. Other walls will be dedicated to unknown artists and original pieces. The back of the gallery is partitioned with thick curtains but contains more art. Upstairs will be more furniture pieces from all over the world.
“We want people to have a feeling like there’s always something to explore around every corner,” Coniff says. “So when they come in, they’re curious.”
Hartman says, “We feel that art of all measures is a bridge to God, or a bridge to love. It makes people feel good.”
Hartman, Coniff, and Maddy Nata, who’s also involved in the gallery, all have a deep understanding and love for art. Artist Dreams will continue to acquire exceptional art from around the world to bring something new to the Ashland art scene.
Artist Dreams Studio
60 E Main St.
Steve Smith Grand Artist Reception on February 11th at 4pm