Prothro Gallery celebrates its one-year anniversary
Sculptor Malen Pierson will be in attendance
A little more than a year ago, Traci Prothro — at the urging of her husband Pat — opened the Prothro Gallery, with the goal of representing top-selling and world-renowned artists.
“I had a good reputation because I had worked with many of these artists prior to opening my own gallery,” Prothro told The Park Record in a joint interview with gallery marketing director Nanci Nemeth. “But I can’t really take credit for it, because of Nanci. I love to bring in the art, but Nanci makes showing it look good.”
Prothro and Nemeth, who refer to each other as “work wives,” want to celebrate the gallery’s one-year anniversary. So they decided to throw a party from 6-9 p.m. on Friday, Sept. 22, and from 5-9 p.m. on Saturday, Sept. 23, at 314 Main St.
The evening will feature live music by Seattle musician Jumpin’ Johnny, light eats and drinks.
“Jumpin’ Johnny is actually Traci’s father,” Nemeth said. “He’s well-known in Seattle and has opened for Bob Dylan and Aerosmith.”
In addition sculptor Malen Pierson will attend the event.
“Malen, who lives in Logan, was here during our kick-off grand opening last year, so he has come full circle with us,” Nemeth said. “I think Malen will create a special work for Traci’s dad because he really loves him.”
Pierson grew up around art while living in Fontana, California. His mother was an artist and worked at a museum.
“I studied painting in college at Utah State University, but then I took a sculpture class, and that’s where I felt I belonged,” Pierson said. “I created my own medium at the time. I used found objects that were metal and went from there.”
The metal works Pierson creates are of wildlife — moose, goats, horses, herons and owls, to name a few.
“I’ve always been interested in animals, and I wanted to create my own version of a contemporary animal sculpture,” he said.
All of Pierson’s work is done freehand.
“I’ll get an idea and start forming it,” he said. “I don’t do a lot of sketching when I start. I just look at a picture and then start creating.”
Pierson also creates art out of old car hoods.
“I have pieces that hang in my house that I made 20 years ago, and I started showing them in my shows,” he said. “After I talked with Traci, I kind of reinvented them for the gallery.”
Pierson enjoys the creative flow of his profession and appreciates his clients who support him.
“I think my future goal would be to do larger pieces and maybe do some public works,” he said.
Prothro began representing Pierson from the get-go.
“He’s quite a character,” Prothro said. “He spoke with a dear friend of ours, and she told him that I was opening a new gallery.”
Within a year, Prothro Gallery became Pierson’s top seller.
“Sculptures are a little more difficult to sell, because they are more eclectic,” Prothro said. “So this is great for him and us.”
The gallery currently represents 11 artists, including Pierson, Thomas Arvid, Chris DeRubeis, Tom Everhart, Nancy Noel Fechtel, Nandy Jones, Nikki Keye, Houston Llew, Michaelle Peters, Ford Smith and Janet Tefertiller.
“Some of these artists are represented through other galleries, but we have become one of their top-selling galleries,” Prothro said.
Still, working in the gallery business can be challenging.
“You have to get the flow right, especially when you’re surrounded by other great galleries, like we are in Park City,” Prothro said. “These galleries here are fabulous, but my husband and his parents — Mark and Diane — were adamant that I was going to open my own gallery, and we did it.”
Nemeth believes the reason Prothro is such a success because the atmosphere is different than other galleries.
“We really like to have fun, and our clients are our friends,” she said. “It’s like a family affair, and that means our parties are very different and more casual.”
A one-year anniversary celebration will be held from 6-9 p.m. on Friday, Sept. 22, and from 5-9 p.m. on Saturday, Sept. 23, at Prothro Gallery, 314 Main St. The night will feature live, light appetizers and drinks. Sculptor Malen Pierson will also be in attendance. The event is free and open to the public, but RSVPs are required. To RSVP, call 435-200-8866 or 888-208-5006. For information about the gallery visit their website. Click here for information about Malen Pierson.
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