New gallery hopes to share the space
For Ellie Faller, business is all about cooperation.
“The reason I want to have a cooperative business is because I want to share with others. There are lots of other artists in the same boat as I am. They’d love to have their things in a store, but some of the things they sell might not fit in with another store,” said Faller.
Faller knows the struggle of not having her own space all too well. She ran her own home based floral business called “Memories in Silk,” for thirteen years, but always wanted to expand into an actual store.
“It’s one of those things. I’ve always wanted to have a store, but I’ve just been waiting for the right time,” said Faller.
However Faller didn’t want to start out completely on her own. So she’s opened up the business to other artists.
“Here’s how it works — any artist who is interested in having things in here would pay x amount for rent to help pay for the place and bills. Then they have their pieces on display. Whatever they make, they get to keep at the end of the month,” said Faller.
The pieces are spread out through the store in order to create a display pleasing to the eye. But don’t worry, each artist will get their fair share.
“We have the things marked with a system so we know which artist makes what, so nothing gets mixed up,” said Faller.
Faller also hopes contributing artists will volunteer time in the store, working the cash register, keeping the shelves dusted, cleaning, shoveling and also creating more pieces.
“I think people really appreciate the opportunity to meet the artists,” said Faller.
Faller also has an “artist of the month” program. Each month, a selected artist will have the front window in the store to create their own unique display. Currently Faller’s own work is on display in the front windows.
Faller’s artwork is a mix of ceramics and floral arrangements. She creates silk flower arrangements as centerpieces. But her signature pieces are her flowers created from feathers. She also makes her own vases.
“I got into ceramics because I’d been in the floral business for about eight years and at that point I really wanted to find something that would walk hand in hand with the flowers,” said Faller.
She said she also finds pottery to be therapeutic, relaxing and creative.
“It keeps me out of trouble,” she said.
Woodland Art Gallery is located at 28 W. First Street. Store hours vary. Call 218-722-4030 or visit http://www.duluthwoodlandartstudio.com/ for more information.