Tumbleweeds in Park City offers furniture that’s on the move
July 14, 2009
Scott Gutierrez is an artist who loves to make furniture. He started as an illustrator, naturally turned to painting, but longed to work with his hands and in thee dimensions.
But eventually it just felt too weird to keep making new furniture when there was so many good quality, but neglected pieces out there, he said.
That’s how Tumbleweeds came to be. It’s hard to describe the boutique, other than Gutierrez’s own definition of beauty. It’s got some antiques, a few items on consignment, some of his own paintings and sculptures, but taking up the most space is what he calls "reinvented furniture." It’s his own brand of "found-object" art.
"The main premise behind the store is being resourceful with things already there. There’s a lot of stuff out there people get rid of or don’t want to repair. I find objects I can reinvent," he explained.
Sometimes he’ll find a nightstand at a yard sale that’s an ugly color. Giving it a different finish takes it from trashy to classy.
"Call me a scavenger, a restorer," he said. "I make it look more appealing."
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There’s also a higher profit margin on a table that he found with a broken leg and gave new life.
"There’s so much stuff out there already, it feels weird to keep manufacturing things," he said.
Designers on a budget are notorious for repainting junk for use in a first apartment, but Gutierrez applies his artist’s eye and training to everything he offers in Tumbleweeds. The items he sells are no less works of art than his original pieces, but they have inherent character that makes them unique.
Besides beauty, it’s also easier to sleep at night knowing you’re saving trees and keeping things out of the landfill, he said.
Gutierrez said he was inspired for the name by how tumbleweeds pass from one place to the next. His store sells items passing from one person to another.
He opened for two years in Heber, but realized his customer base was in Park City. Ron Butkovich, owner of the custom jewelry studio and shop RSB Designs, invited him to display some pieces during the last Sundance Film Festival. The two quickly realized how well their work went together, and now the artists permanently share the boutique at 1101 Park Ave.
"I had an austere jewelry boutique. Now it has more depth and character. It seems to work," he said.
Having the pieces displayed together gives a shopper more to look at, and gives both men more exposure, Gutierrez said.
Just as he refuses to be "pigeon-holed" into a style or medium, Gutierrez said, he’s also hesitant to classify the store. He said it’s gradually morphing into something, and he’s letting it.
"I haven’t really defined it. I’m letting it take its course and see what happens," he said.
Linda Casey said she’s a fan of Gutierrez’s work.
"He’s very inventive. He’ll take unusual objects and put them together in a unique way," she said.
Casey has one of his paintings, a dining-room table and a sideboard.
"They’re all very different. I like that he takes things that he finds and makes them into something," she said.
The sideboard is old barn wood on top and parts from a bed on the bottom.
"It’s fun, it’s different; he has a great eye, and I’m glad he’s in Park City," she said.
in RSB Design
1101 Park Ave.