Gallery Mar paints a 10-year celebration
Gallery MAR, 436 Main St., is celebrating its 10th anniversary. For information, visit www.gallerymar.com.
Gallery MAR is celebrating its 10th anniversary and owner Maren Mullin wants everyone to join the party.
That’s why she has asked videographer Claire Wiley, of Eclectic Brew Productions, to create a series of short videos that spotlight the 32 artists the gallery represents, as well as document some of the events hosted by the gallery.
Wiley will make a new video each month throughout the year.
“You can talk about art all day long, but the best way to experience it is to see it,” Mullin said. “I wanted people to see and hear from my artists directly, and I also wanted an online video catalog so people who are new to the gallery can learn about us and experience what it’s like to be part of the Gallery MAR family.”
Mullin’s decision to work with Wiley on the videos was simple because the two are great friends.
“She also knows a lot of my artists,” Mullin said. “So she had an idea of what to expect when she made the videos.”
Wiley said each video will tell a story that is highlighted by interviews and behind-the-scenes footage.
“While you can have all kinds of beautiful imagery, we like to put the soul into the videos, and in this case, the soul is the people; the artists,” Wiley explained. “Many people may not have the opportunity to attend Gallery MAR artist receptions, and these videos give them a space where they can learn more about the people behind the art.”
Mullin and Wiley discussed the monthly topics, which include an art installation at the One Empire Pass residences and the history of Gallery MAR.
“Of course, most of the others videos will focus on each of my artists,” Mullin said.
Throughout the past 10 years, the gallery owner has cultivated strong relationships with the artists she represents and her employees.
“Many of the artists from the very beginning are still with us,” she said. “When I started, I represented 15 artists. Now there are 32, and out of them, seven have been with me from the beginning.”
Mullin is always excited to introduce artists to the gallery and her collectors.
“We also have the honor of launching several young artists’ careers out of the gallery, which I’m really proud of,” she said.
One of those artists is encaustic painter Bridgette Meinhold who has been represented by Mullin for eight years. (See accompanying story).
The gallery owner said relies on her intuition when selecting a new artist.
“There is a catalog of ideas that will go into these decisions, and the way I pick my artists is, I think, very much the same way my collectors pick their art,” she said. “Sometimes you just know, but the art has to speak to you. It has to move you.”
Mullin has also learned a few things in the past 10 years.
“There have been times when I’ve made a guess on an artist or particular pieces that haven’t resonated well,” she said. “I have made some mistakes, but there has always been a great lesson in that.”
When Mullin looks for new artists, she seeks out pieces that are unique to Gallery MAR and unique to Park City.
“I also have to make sure the work plays well with my other artists’ works,” she said. “Many people come and select many pieces for their homes, and while we don’t want things to be too identical, we want the aesthetic to flow from piece to piece.”
Another rewarding aspect of owning an art gallery is the relationships that are forged with clients, according to Mullin.
“You see your favorite people come back year after year and you get to watch their kids grow,” she said. “And some of these kids become art collectors themselves.”
Mullin also enjoys the sense of ownership her clients create with her artists.
“When someone falls in love with a work of art, you get to see it in their face and their home,” she said. “I hear stories of how the art affects them on a day to day basis, and many of these people come in to the gallery to see what ‘their’ artists are doing.”
The goal for Gallery MAR hasn’t changed over the past decade, Mullin said.
“It’s always been that magical point where you get to surround someone with very beautiful things,” she said. “As someones aesthetic aligns with my own vision of the gallery, I know the new artists we bring in will be ones they want to follow themselves.”
Mullin credits her husband, Matt, for encouraging her to open Gallery MAR in 2008.
“He’s the one who told me I should just do this, and I don’t think I would have been able to do this without his support,” she said. “He’s not an employee of the gallery, but whenever we have something super heavy to lift or if I need someone to sit at the gallery when I need to do something, he’ll help out.”
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Park City Institute presents CAM, Saturday, Aug. 24, and will wrap up the 2019 St. Regis Big Stars, Bright Nights Summer Concert Series.