Couple hopes to expand art scene in Lake Oswego
Prior to the pandemic, it wasn't unusual for artist Tina Hospers and her husband, John Koster, to attend more than 30 art shows across the country in a year. Needless to say, they've met many unique artists while on the road.
As the years passed, Hospers and Koster toyed with the idea of switching lifestyles so they could be more connected to one location.
This fall, Hospers and Koster decided to open a brick-and-mortar art gallery in Lake Oswego. The Perfect Piece — Gallery & Gifts is located at 1179 McVey Avenue and will likely open doors Friday, Oct. 15.
"First of all, we feel they're (the Lake Oswego community) appreciative of fine arts (and) probably have the demographics to support fine art," Hospers said. "We have done the Lake Oswego art show ourselves and we love the area."
The Damascus residents are wood artists and own their own business, Cutting Edge Wood Creations.
While they do exhibit their own work — and will continue to cherry pick shows after the opening of the gallery — Hospers said "it becomes a little brutal to be out on the road. … It is a lot of hard work."
This year, the couple were scheduled to be in at least 10 different states.
"You get a couple of days off and then you go and load into another show," Hospers said. "It'll take us three days to get to Colorado and do our shows. We're not spring chickens."
And as she and her husband started discussing how nice it would be to operate a brick-and-mortar, they realized they knew enough artists from exhibiting their own work across the country that they could easily fill a gallery with a variety of artists.
So far, the duo has 40 artists lined up to be featured in the gallery, which will rotate new art every few months or so.
"I am so full of art right at the moment," Hospers said. "I think I have actually made it so full (that) there's no room for our own art on the wall,"
The first round of art includes work from fine jewelers, mixed media artists, painters, ceramicists, glass artists and more.
"There is going to be handcrafted furniture that will be coming in," Hospers said. "These are all handcraft artisans that will be doing the furniture."
People will be required to wear masks when entering the gallery and the owners will follow COVID-19 safety mandates.
"It's not a co-op," Hospers said. "This is artist-owned, so we're very invested in representing the artists that we are bringing in and making sure we are bringing in quality pieces for people.
"I am really striving for a great variety and representing all mediums."
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