A gallery merry-go-round | AspenTimes.com

A gallery merry-go-round

Naomi Havlen
Gallery owner David Floria looks over his new space Thursday at 525 E. Cooper Ave. Aspen Times photo/Jim Noelker.

Art is on the move this spring in Aspen.Two longtime local galleries are relocating in the downtown commercial core, and two new galleries are moving into vacated storefronts.The David Floria Gallery, operating for seven years in a space on the Mill Street mall across from Wagner Park, has moved to a space on Cooper Avenue, where it’ll be surrounded by other Aspen galleries. The vacated spot on Mill Street is being overhauled to make way for a Ben & Jerry’s ice cream shop.Floria said his lease of seven years ran out, and although he was interested in staying in the location, building owners David and Laetitia Gordon instead decided to lease the space to Ben & Jerry’s.

His new location at 525 E. Cooper Ave. is a second-story space with 558 square feet – half the size of his previous space. It has held a number of seasonal galleries in recent years but was once the George Shaw Gallery with Native American artifacts.”I really feel that this is a great location, a better location, and we’re excited to be here,” Floria said. “I think it’ll be more successful than our previous location. I’m pleased to be working here with other galleries in the center of town.”The space is visible from Cooper Avenue and has a large terrace that Floria plans on using for some large outdoor sculptures. The space is being remodeled, and Floria plans on having the first solo exhibition and reception in the new space on June 10 – Andy Katz’s nudes and landscapes, showing in conjunction with the Food & Wine Magazine Classic in Aspen.He said he wishes the owners of the new Ben & Jerry’s franchise success in their venture. Karen Setterfield, a commercial real estate agent with Setterfield & Bright in Aspen, brokered the deal between Floria and his new landlords. She has also helped three other galleries find spaces in Aspen, including the 16-year-old E.S. Lawrence Gallery, which had to move out of its longtime location across Hyman Avenue from Little Annie’s Eating House.

The gallery is remodeling the space at 217 S. Galena St., which was Sharper Image for 10 years until the tech store closed in April. The gallery’s remodeling efforts in the space were recently halted by a stop order from the city’s community development department.According to chief building official Stephen Kanipe, the gallery did not apply for a building permit for its remodeling, but the issue is being worked out with the building owners. They applied for a building permit on Thursday to remedy the situation. None of the remodeling affects the outside of the building, which is historic, Kanipe said.Also, Setterfield said By Nature Gallery is moving into one of the ground-floor commercial spaces in the Aspen Square building on Cooper Street. The gallery, which has one other location in Beaver Creek, sells artwork “created naturally in nature,” like carvings from minerals, fossils, ivory and petrified wood.Finally, The Gallerie is opening in 533 E. Hopkins Ave., the small space that used to hold Daughter Earth Apothecary. Setterfield said this gallery will have a bicycle and sports theme featuring photography, bicycles and some sportswear.Naomi Havlen’s e-mail address is nhavlen@aspentimes.com

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