Words by Gloria Gale
That ‘it’ factor that makes a space swoon-worthy? It’s art.
ave you ever experienced the futility of moving your furniture around and around again with no satisfying result? It’s absurd. However, your furniture placement might not be the only reason why you’re still not loving your personal space.
We’re hardwired to move toward a visual reference that makes us feel good. Even early civilizations drew on the walls of their caves, oftentimes to enhance and add meaning to their dwellings.
Now as a more advanced civilization, we have realized that art conjures emotion through color, composition and a sense of place or memory.
The cultural base in Kansas City that fostered Disney Studios, Thomas Hart Benton and a thriving Crossroads Arts District is a lasting legacy, one that still sustains talent to this day. The results? Beautifully adorned spaces rich with art.
Why quibble? The pros at local galleries make it easy for you. They’ll partner and guide you with a sure hand.
A mainstay in Historic Downtown Overland Park, the 6,000-square-foot gallery space includes a collection of original artworks from renowned artists. Blessed with that high visibility, passersby can mull over rotating works always on display.
Leading the family business as a second-generation owner, Megan Hoban picked up the mantle to grow an enterprise that encompasses both custom framing and commercial and residential art. Founded by her mother in 1990, the gallery’s reputation—and offerings—have continued to grow over the past 33 years. Corporate and residential art consulting, conservation framing, delivery and installation make buying artwork at Prairiebrooke a full-service experience.
“We are passionate about the service our team provides when working with clients to find the perfect piece of artwork for their space,” Megan says.
7900 Santa Fe, Overland Park, Kansas
Experience counts. Kelly Kuhn—the seasoned gallerist, curator and owner of this venerable gallery—has maintained her discerning point of view for more than 20 years. And it’s served her clients well.
Blue Gallery, located on Southwest Boulevard, is an anchor for the Crossroads Arts District.
Routinely working with a carefully chosen talent of 45 artists, collectors realize that Kelly and her husband, David, will suggest the right art for their clients with laser-like focus. “You want a piece to linger in your memory,” she says. “If you just can’t shake the image in your mind’s eye, it’s probably time to revisit the piece.”
Kelly loves working with artists, making sure they’re nurtured and driven to constantly improve their work. She is a companion to her artists, guiding them to excel. It’s a testament to her keen leadership, considering some who’ve been with her since she opened.
“I want both clients and my artists to have passion about choosing and creating art,” she says. “I will be with clients from start to finish.”
Blue Gallery offers one-on-one and virtual appointments for home and business.
118 Southwest Blvd., Kansas City, Missouri
Businessman, gallerist and art collector Bill Haw often thinks of his ownership of his West Bottoms gallery as serendipity. Committed to community awareness and establishing the location as a premier gallery, Bill’s reputation has steadily grown since he bought the business—formerly Dolphin Gallery—from founder John O’Brien in 2013.
Long involved in family real estate, Bill has been instrumental in boosting the Stockyards District in the Bottoms—a contribution to continued growth and visibility for local artists. The Livestock Building, which his family owns, is a perfect example, housing artists’ studios in the classic building.
“Our gallery is big,” he says. “We present talent that is in line with our program.”
This inclusive notion means Haw Contemporary isn’t limiting its target clientele to high-end buyers only. “There’s great art you can buy for $700; that’s affordable,” Bill says. “There’s good art at any price.”
He’s also a proponent of representing women artists. Regardless of gender identity, showcasing contemporary art is the goal at Haw—securing Kansas City’s reputation for nurturing exceptional talent. The West and East coasts have numerous resources, but the artists Haw selects create cutting-edge art that measures up—putting KC squarely on the map.
1600 Liberty Street,
Kansas City, Missouri
Weinberger Fine Art
Who wants to wake up and see beautiful art illuminating their space? “Most,” says Kim Weinberger, curator, businesswoman and—like her gallery peers—benevolent shepherd to her stable of talent.
Friendly and welcoming is the ambiance that prevails inside Weinberger Fine Art on Southwest Boulevard. “A diversity of visitors generates an insightful diversity of questions,” she says. “We enjoy working with first-time buyers, well-established collectors, interior designers and large-scale architectural projects.”
How do buyers learn about how to buy art? “That’s a well-worn dilemma,” Kim says. “We will explain the artist’s background and how their market value is established or select the right piece that works for a buyer’s taste. We offer every buyer our advice on how to start a collection based on their individual needs. We also work with an art financing company called Art Money that offers 10-month financing with no interest. This allows the buyer to take their art home immediately. It’s a great option for all buyers, actually.”
Regardless, Kim says her gallery showcases a wider range of artists than most galleries. Emerging artists, such as Lily Mueller, or the well-collected Hunt Slonem, are equally valued.
“We will support and guide each client who considers artists throughout their career,” Kim says.
114 Southwest Blvd, Kansas City, Missouri
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