Saturday, May 31, 2014

Victoria Varga Jewelry featured at Smith Galleries

Victoria Varga
Smith Galleries features the jewelry of American artist Victoria Varga.

Victoria Varga received her BS in fine arts from Skidmore College in 1984. After completing her graduate studies in metals at Syracuse University she moved to New York City with her husband, Daniel Brouder, where the couple co-founded the studio that bears her name. After fourteen years in Manhattan Daniel and Victoria relocated their studio to the coast of Maine where they continue to hand fabricate jewelry of Victoria’s design. From her early years in New York Victoria has crafted jewelry that combines precious metals with a variety of materials that are often discounted as  ordinary. Victoria has perfected a process of combing sterling silver, 23 karat gold leaf, resin, crushed stone and common artist pigments to create her signature line of jewelry. Instantly recognized for its timeless good looks, Varga jewelry delights both men and woman with its innovative combination of unexpected materials and whimsical design.

Victoria Varga handcrafts jewelry that reflects in its clean design and bold graphics, the very best tenants of fine art while redefining the modern spirit.

Smith Galleries is located in suite J11 of the Village at Wexford at 1000 William Hilton Parkway on Hilton Head Island, South Carolina. Gallery hours are 10 - 6 Monday through Saturday. 800.272.3870

Saturday, May 24, 2014

Smith Galleries Features Stuart Nye Jewelry

Dogwood Pin by Stuart Nye Jewelry
Smith Galleries has featured the jewelry of Stuart Nye for many years. The jewelry is classically designed and inspired by nature.

In the depths of the depression, Stuart Nye bought some second hand tools and a little silver. Without any experience in jewelry or metal work, but with good taste, an eye for beauty and faith in himself, he began to make a few simple bangle bracelets. Through trial and error he learned the nature of his materials and began to fashion silver into the leaves and flowers so characteristic of our jewelry today. From that day in 1933 when Mr. Nye began, our shop has changed in many ways. It has moved from an attic room through a series of additions to a garage to the rustic building built especially for their use in 1948 which is now call "The Shop".

The range of products has changed too. The original work was in Sterling Silver and this continues to be the most popular product. Copper was added during the metal shortages of World War II. Brass was added during the silver price explosion in the winter of 1979-80.
"The Shop" of  Stuart Nye Jewelry

Over the years they have invented many of their production methods. Through trial and error they have refined them and shared them with one another. Their artisans are trained in the shop and seldom have had prior training or experience in metal work or jewelry making.

Their tools are still simple ones. They make chisels from old files, and punches from nail sets or common nails. They make cutting tools and chisels from tool steel and use hammers and anvils large enough to remind one of an old blacksmith shop.

The beauty of their jewelry does not come from the tools. It comes from the inspiration that nature can give to a man who will take the time to look and from the skill and dedication of our craftsmen. We are mountain people with a heritage of craftsmanship.

Stuart Nye jewelry is of a quality that only a hand craftsman with a sense of pride in his work can produce, and it is produced at a modest price so that ordinary people can own and enjoy it. This was Stuart Nye's goal. This is still the goal today.

Smith Galleries is located in suite J11 of the Village at Wexford at 1000 William Hilton Parkway on Hilton Head Island, South Carolina. 800.272.3870

Thursday, May 22, 2014

Mystic Woodworks featured at Smith Galleries on Hilton Head Island, South Carolina

Chip and Dip by Mystic Woodworks
Smith Galleries features the functional wooden ware of Mystic Woodworks.

Ray and Jamie Doubleday (owners of Mystic Woodworks) make high quality wooden ware in mid coast Maine. They find their inspiration in where they live and the medium they have chosen.

Ray and Jamie write..."In everything we do we feel that it is nature, not we who is the artist. Many of our designs are a direct reflection of nature, such as our fish board and our many leaf shapes. Other designs are a celebration of the wood itself. We see the layout process (where we assemble strips of differing woods) as a way to highlight the beauty of the wood. The shite of maple is striking in itself but when it is placed next to a piece of black walnut, the combination becomes synergistic. Add the bright red of padauk, the golden tones of ash and oak with the earth tone of cherry and we have an explosion of beauty."

Ray writes..."As an engineer, I am constantly looking for ways to improve our manufacturing processes. Although wood is a renewable resource, we take our stewardship role seriously and try to maximize the use of the wood we buy minimizing the scrap. This is why you see some very thin strips of wood in our breadboards. The finishing of our boards is done with food save oils and a touch of bees' wax."

Jamie writes..."Living in coastal Maine we are surrounded by spectacular natural beauty. Everyday
Cracker Tray with Cheese Dome by Mystic Woodworks
the changing palettes of the mighty Atlantic Ocean and the subtle textures of the mysterious Maine woods provide inspiration and encouragement. We try to capture the changing beauty of these natural resources through our design and use of various woods

All of our products are functional, we find it a constant and rewarding challenge to design new objects. We take pride in the quality of our work. There is a great deal of pleasure and satisfaction in speaking with customers who tell us they have had one of our cutting boards for many years and it still looks great."

Smith Galleries is located in suite J11 of The Village at Wexford at 1000 William Hilton Parkway on Hilton Head Island. Gallery hours are 10 - 6 Monday through Saturday. 843.842.2280

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Danica Design Candles are Featured at Smith Galleries on Hilton Head Island, South Carolina

Smith Galleries features the beautiful hand made candles of Americans Cindy and Erik Laustsen,

Cindy and Erik write..."We began dipping candles in 1980, after apprenticing with an uncle at his candle factory, in the lovely village of Karlebo Denmark. After returning to upstate New York we began making candles in a friends barn and circa 1810 schoolhouse. In 1982 Danica Design moved to the coast of Maine. We then occupied three floors of a Victorian carriage barn and expanded our line of hand-dipped tapers. In 1991, we designed a building with candle making, retailing and architecture in mind, and moved to West Rockport.
We added scented jar candles, votives, scented and unscented pillar candles, and tea lights to our line. In 1992, we were given the Commercial Building Award from the Camden Rockport Lincolnville Chamber of Commerce, and in 1995 the Retailer of the Year Award from the Maine Merchants Association. We use a blend of beeswax and other premium waxes in our tapers. No lead wick or animal by products are used. All of our candles are solid color and long burning. Our scented products have fragrances throughout."

Smith Galleries is located in suite J11 of the Village at Wexford at 1000 William Hilton Parkway on Hilton Head Island, South Carolina. The gallery is open from 10 - 6 Monday through Saturday year round. 800.272.3870

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Art Glass by Melanie Guernsey featured at Smith Galleries on Hilton Head Island

Glass Cairns by Melanie Leppla at Smith Galleries
Smith Galleries on Hilton Head Island, South Carolina, features the art glass of Melanie Leppla. The gallery has focused on Melanie's lanterns and cairns. See a video here. Other pieces of Melanie's which have been on display at Smith Galleries are here.

Melanie has been working professionally with glass since graduating from Rochester Institute of Technology with a BFA in 1986. Her professional career includes shows internationally as well as across the United States. Honors include two fellowship grants from The Creative Glass Center of America and a fellowship grant from the New Jersey Counsel for the Arts. Her work is included in the Museum of American Craft and the Museum of American Glass as well as numerous important private collections.

Smith Galleries is located in suite J11 of the Village at Wexford at 1000 William Hilton Parkway on Hilton Head Island South Carolina. 800.272.3870

Monday, May 19, 2014

Don Drumm featured at Smith Galleries

The metal sculpture of Don Drumm is a continuous feature at Smith Galleries on Hilton Head Island, South Carolina.

Don Drumm was born in Warren, Ohio in 1935. After studying medicine for two years at Hiram College in Hiram, Ohio, he decided to pursue a career in art. He transferred to Kent State University where he received a B.F.A. and an M.A. He subsequently worked as a designer for the Industrial Design firm “Smith, Scherr and McDermott” for two years.

In 1960 Drumm opened his own studio, as a full time practicing Sculptor and designer/craftsman near the University of Akron in Akron, Ohio. In 1971, together with his wife, Lisa Drumm, he expanded the studio to incorporate a one-room gallery. Since then the enterprise has grown extensively and now embraces eight buildings, providing gallery facilities for over 500 artists and studio space for three resident artists.

In the late 1950s Drumm pioneered the use of cast aluminum (aluminum) as an artistic medium. In addition he has been a pioneer in the use of contemporary building materials, and techniques for the creation of Arts and crafts. The 1960s brought about many teaching opportunities for Don as he was artist-in-residence at Bowling Green State University and taught at Penland School of Crafts.

He continues experimenting and constantly creating to this day. Drumm has won numerous awards along the way, including: Ohio Designer Crafts' “Lifetime Achievement Award”, “Outstanding Contributors of the Century”, to the Akron community by the Beacon Journal Publishing Company, first recipient of the Outstanding Visual Artist Award from the Akron Area Arts Alliance in 2000, and the first recipient of the American Institute of Architecture (AIA) “Artist and Craftsman Excellence” award.

Smith Galleries is located at in suite J11 of the Village at Wexford at 1000 William Hilton Parkway on Hilton Head Island, South Carolina. Gallery hours are 10 - 6 Monday through Saturday. 800.272.3870

Sunday, May 11, 2014

Art Glass by Ed Branson Featured at Smith Galleries

Ed Branson at work

The art glass of master glass blower Ed Branson has been featured at Smith Galleries for many years. Jean and Wally Smith selected Ed's work for the gallery because of the beauty and excellent craftsmanship.

Tropical Wave Bowl

Ed writes..."Since 1982 glass has had a constant presence in my life.  Our relationship has been enhanced and explored with some of the world’s glass masters, but predominantly my knowledge of this magic material is built on day-to-day experience and practice in my studio.  This path has led me to a fairly simple artistic approach; trust the glass, have fun, accept mistakes, study nature and search for beautiful forms and colors inherent in glass’ personality."

See Ed make  a "Tropical Wave" bowl.

See other pieces of Ed Branson's glass at Smith Galleries.

Smith Galleries is located in suite J11 of the Village at Wexford at 1000 William Hilton Parkway on Hilton Head Island. Gallery hours are 10 - 6 Monday through Saturday. 800.272.3870

Saturday, May 10, 2014

The jewelry of Philippa Roberts is featured at Smith Galleries

Philippa Roberts
The jewelry of Philippa Roberts is a mainstay at Smith Galleries on Hilton Head Island. The gallery is featuring a special exhibit of her jewelry as part of their 26th anniversary.

Philippa was born in South Africa to a jewelry making family, she was naturally drawn to working with metals and stones. She graduated from Miami University (in Ohio) with a BFA in Metal Design and Photography. With California calling, she moved to San Francisco in 1994 to begin her career in jewelry design. Philippa started out working for different designers to develop and hone her jewelry and business skills. In 1996 Philippa established her first studio in the basement of her San Francisco apartment building. What started as a small, hopeful business has developed into a large design studio and retail store. She now works from a studio attached to her shop in Oakland.

Philippa’s signature look is simple, organic shapes combined with beautifully cut gemstones. Her love of the ocean plays a large role in the selection of clean, blue and green stones in many of her pieces. Philippa’s creativity stems from the nature around her, yet she also incorporates a feeling of the urban, with lines and patterns that imitate architecture and design seen around the city. Philippa creates all the original pieces by carving in wax or fabricating in metal. Her selection of new stones for each season defines how her collections will come to life. “I love going to the gem shows and being inspired by all the stones I see. To put the colors together and develop a collection is one of my favorite parts of the job.” Once the pieces are ready for production, her team of skilled crafts people make each piece by hand in her Oakland studio.

Using silver as her main medium, Philippa creates necklaces, bracelets, rings, and earrings that can be worn formally or informally, with an appeal to all ages. “I love to hear from customers that mine is their favorite everyday jewelry, or that they have been wearing one of my pieces for the past ten years. It is my goal to make jewelry that is beautiful, simple, wearable, and most importantly, timeless.”

Philippa Roberts jewelry is carried in specialty shops around the world. It has been a dream come
Necklace and Earrings by Philippa Roberts
true for her to be featured in such esteemed art museums as the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, the DeYoung Museum, and the Museum of Art and Design in New York City. Philippa lives in Oakland with her husband, Brian and their daughter Charlotte.

Smith Galleries is located in suite J11 of the the Village at Wexford at 1000 William Hilton Parkway on Hilton Head Island. Gallery hours are 10 - 6 Monday through Saturday. 800.272.3870

Friday, May 9, 2014

Glass Eye Studio featured at Smith Galleries

Paperweight by Glass Eye
    Smith Galleries is known as the premier source for art glass on Hilton Head Island. The ornaments and paperweights of Glass Eye Studio have been a continuous focus of the gallery for many years.    
    Glass Eye Studio has designed and created exquisite handmade glass for more than 30 years. Through vibrant paperweights, innovative ornaments, functional bowls and vases, our family of glass artisans strives to pass to our customers the same marvel and appreciation that we have for blown glass.
    The process, from start to finish, creates the true beauty and mystery of glass. Applying immense heat to a mixture of mostly sand, glass evolves. Each individual piece begins by gathering a precise amount of glass on the end of a blowpipe or rod. To reach the desired look, the blowing team uses a wide array of color and materials. Many of Glass Eye Studio's designs require days of preparation before a single piece is even made. Manipulating the look of the glass, the blower shapes the molten mass with light but precise touches of manual tools. After a quick fire-polish, the product is slowly brought to room temperature over a period of days. Finally. and annealed solid piece is finished using diamond wheel grinders and polishing stones. The artisans at Glass Eye studios create each blown glass vase by hand. Use with your favorite flowers or display as art in your home. Each piece, all handmade, receive individual attention as it is carefully crafted into it's final form. The process itself is almost as amazing as the final product. Because each piece is handmade the color or size may vary and bubbles may appear in the glass. This is not a flaw but your assurance that each piece is handmade.
Glass Eye Studio in operation
    Glass Eye Studio pieces are hand made by skilled artisans at the Seattle studio. Glass colors are from Germany, New Zealand and some from China. The colors are manipulated in the Seattle studio to produce cane, murrini and stringers. These cane and murrini pieces are used to create wonderful and beautiful handmade glass paperweights, votive lights and ornaments.Glass Eye Studio creates some of America's finest art glass,including ash from Mount St. Helens in some of their pieces.
    Smith Galleries maintains a large selection of glass ornaments and paperweights from Glass Eye. The gallery is located in suite J11 of the Village at Wexford at 1000 William Hilton Parkway on Hilton Head Island. Gallery hours are 10 - 6 Monday through Saturday. 800.272.3870

Thursday, May 8, 2014

Brian Andreas, creator of StoryPeople featured at Smith Galleries

Brian Andreas, creator of StoryPeople
   Smith Galleries has featured the prints, sculpture and books of Brian Andreas for many years. His art is his ability to write every man's thoughts...not easy.
    Brian Andreas is an American writer, painter, sculptor, technologist and publisher widely known for an ongoing series of works presented by the author as StoryPeople.
    The StoryPeople collection now includes eleven books incorporating drawings and writings; color prints of his drawings and short stories along; and mixed-media sculptures incorporating salvaged wood in deliberately crude shapes, bright colors, hand drawings (especially faces) and rubber-stamped imprints of the authors writings.
StoryPeople wall scuplture

    In 1994, Andreas co-founded a company, StoryPeople, to distribute his work worldwide, and in 2012 he founded, a collaborative digital storytelling platform.
    Andreas was born in 1956 in Iowa City and grew up in Chicago, Illinois. He graduated from Luther College in Decorah, Iowa, in 1979 with a BA in Theater and English. He went on to receive his MFA in Fiber and Mixed Media in 1992 from the John F. Kennedy University in Orinda, California,where he focused on Fiber, with an emphasis on story as the fiber of human community.It was during 1992-1993, in conjunction with the Graduate School of Arts and Consciousness at JFK University, that he coordinated an early Internet experiment in collaborative storytelling called the Hall of Whispers.
   Smith Galleries is located in suite J11 of the Village at Wexford at 1000 William Hilton Parkway on Hilton Head Island, SC. Gallery hours are 10-6 Monday through Saturday. 843.842.2280

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

The candles of Rick Faulkner are featured at Smith Galleries

Rick Faulkner in his studio.
Smith Galleries has featured the candles of Rick Faulkner (Barrick Design) for many years. We are honoring Rick today with this post by thanking him for his passion for creating truly exceptional candles.
Rick creates unique artisan candles to add a modern, contemporary touch to any room. He prides himself in creating exquisite candles with a stylish yet functional design orientation. The candles are unscented which makes them ideal for celebrations, holidays, and everyday use.
Handcrafted in his Lancaster, Pennsylvania studio, his candles add a touch of elegance to any room. Barrick Design Candles are as aesthetically pleasing as they are functional, which makes them ideal gifts for a myriad of occasions. They are wonderful as decorative accents in any interior whether contemporary or more traditional.
Rick makes candles in over 30 color groups with several shades of most colors so that people can find a color that enhances their space. Moreover, his candles have a distinct crackle pattern, ensuring that they look phenomenal in various room styles.
Barrick candles with holders by Girardini Design
For more than 30 years, Barrick Design Candles has been proudly crafting simplistic and elegant candles.
Smith Galleries is located at 1000 William Hilton Parkway in suite J11 of the Village at Wexford on Hilton Head Island. Gallery hours are 10-6 Monday through Saturday. 843.842.2280

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Thomas Davin and Mary Kesler are featured at Smith Galleries during the "26 Days in May" celebration.

Thomas and Mary with Tilly at their pond.
Smith Galleries continues the "26 Days in May" celebration of their 26th anniversary with a focus on the fine woodworking of Davin and Kessler. Their work has been a feature in the gallery for many years. The gallery features their bookmarks, business card holders, letter openers, valets, pill boxes, and cufflinks.

Thomas Davin and Mary Kesler have been woodworking together since 1979. Their professional training began during their college years in California where Tom studied cabinetmaking and design at C.S.U. Northridge. Mary began woodworking to help pay expenses toward her Bachelor of Science degree at U.C. Davis. After college, they began a business and life partnership. They now reside with their three children, two boys, Morgan and Roland, and a girl, Joanna in the countryside of Rhode Island.

Working out of a nineteenth century mill overlooking Dorset Mill Pond, Mary and Tom utilize the
Man's valet - cocobolo & cherry
beauty of their surroundings to create objects that are simple yet elegant in design. Their woodcrafts are both serviceable and handsome. With minimal care, they can be appreciated for years to come. The hallmark of their work is its combination of artistic expression and utilitarian design.

Smith Galleries is located in suite J11 of the Village at Wexford at 1000 William Hilton Parkway on Hilton Head Island, SC. Gallery hours are 10 - 6 Monday through Saturday. 843.842.2280

Monday, May 5, 2014

Leigh Standley - "Curly Girl" - is featured during the "26 Days of May" celebration at Smith Galleries

Leigh Stan
Smith Galleries is celebrating their 26th anniversary with a special month-long event called "26 Days in May." The gallery is honoring artists who have been with the gallery for a long time. Click here to learn more about the "26 Days in May."

Leigh Standley (Curly Girl) is one of the gallery's favorite artists. The gallery features her gift cards, art blocks and coasters.

Leigh’s whimsical and witty work has been in the making for the better part of her thirty-ish years. Born and raised in St. Louis, Leigh began designing in seventh grade, where she got poor marks in Math class for doodling. She went on to attend University of Kansas School of Design and holds a BFA in Visual Communications. Her work has been featured in national design publications and regional art shows and is inspired by her incredible friends and family. Leigh has lived in Boston for over 13 years and likes it so much she only occasionally wishes it were Paris.

Leigh enjoys traveling, old movies, and singing. She can’t live without: yoga, her family, Snickers and Lucy the Wonder Dog. She has strong feelings about education, believes in magic, and is quite certain that given a cape and a nice tiara, she could save the world. 

Smith Galleries is located in suite J11 of the Village at Wexford at 1000 William Hilton Parkway on Hilton Head Island, SC. Gallery hours are 10 - 6 Monday through Saturday.

Saturday, May 3, 2014

Roger Gandelman is featured during the "26 Days in May" celebration at Smith Galleries

Elegant Perfume Bottle by Roger Gandelman
Roger Gandelman is a glass artist and has been blowing glass for 30 years. Early in his career he decided to put the bulk of his energy into making art glass perfume bottles. He believes he is the only glass artist in the country, perhaps in the world, who has devoted his full artistic efforts into making this object. His bottles, although small in scale, make a grand statement.

He sees perfume bottles as small, elegant treasures; made to be turned, touched, and relished. He strives to make the form organic, smooth, and familiar, with very few sharp angles. The lip is simple and unobtrusive. The interior decoration adds life, movement, and dimension to the piece.

He uses both furnace and torch techniques to make his work. Colored glass is applied to the clear glass surface to build the flowers. The piece is then encased in more clear glass to achieve a multi-layered 3D optical effect. The flowers appear to be suspended inside the glass. Many of his bottles have various exterior lusters applied while the glass is still molten. The bottle is then cut and polished the next day (using diamond grinding equipment) to open up windows in the glass to expose the interior decoration.

He does all the glassblowing in his studio. He works without assistants. Because he does not work with a team, every progressive step in the creation of the piece has to satisfy him. No piece is finished until he thinks it is a beautiful perfume bottle.

He strives try to make his designs timeless…unmarred by passing trends; with flavors from the age of excellence, encased in a contemporary form.

See more of Rogers work here.

Smith Galleries is located in suite J11 of the Village at Wexford at 1000 William Hilton Parkway on Hilton Head Island, SC. Gallery hours are 10 - 6 Monday through Saturday.


Friday, May 2, 2014

Mike Smith is featured during the "26 Days in May" celebration at Smith Galleries

Mike Smith with SJ Oatman
Smith Galleries has featured the art of internationally recognized artist Mike Smith for many years. Mike is recognized for his brightly colored watercolors and his positive imagery. Our typical comment about his work is, "it makes me happy."
Smith Galleries continues their "26 Days in May" celebration of their 26th anniversary with a special focus on the art of Mike Smith.

Smith Galleries is located in suite J11 of the Village at Wexford at 1000 William Hilton Parkway on Hilton Head Island, SC. Gallery hours are 10-6 Monday through Saturday. 800.272.3870

Thursday, May 1, 2014

"26 Days in May" kicks Off With Joan Z. Horn

Joan Z. Horn in her studio.
Smith Galleries begins their 26th anniversary celebration with a month long focus on individual artists who have been an important part of the gallery's history for many years.

Joan Z. Horn has been a gallery favorite for many years. She, along with her husband and children, have also become personal friends of Jean and Wally.

Joan is a very talented jewelry artist who is continually designing new work which stays fresh while maintaining here distinctive style. She works mostly in sterling silver with some 14k gold additions along with several stones such as pearls, amethyst, peridot, and garnets. Here are a few examples of her jewelry.

Smith Galleries features the work of approximately 300 American artists. The gallery is located at 1000 William Hilton Parkway in suite J11 of The Village at Wexford on Hilton Head Island, South Carolina. Gallery hours are 10-6 Monday through Saturday. 800.272.3870