Welcome to the Fifth Anniversary KMJ Studio Gallery Tour
Yes, a full five years have elapsed since Kris and I first opened our doors to the public. So what have we to show for it? Come with me and take a look
To be completely honest, given the many uncertainties, lockdowns, mandates and setbacks thrown at us these past few years (I’m sure you know what I am talking about) Kris and I see THE KMJ’s survival as the pinnacle achievement of our lives. Little did we know how the world was about to change when we took the plunge to lease this space back in 2017. Consequently, we have looked on with growing sadness as one small business after the next has been forced to close their doors for good. And so it is with a great sense of pride that I am able to post the following pictures showing just how much THE KJM has grown and flourished over the summer months.
In my next post, I intend to present a KMJ retrospective to celebrate our half-decade of commerse with pictures of the entire process, spanning the five years of continual development by rearanging, improving and expanding upon our original idea. But today I simply present these photos as strong evidence that, the last time I checked at least, we are still here – still presenting our light, portable and carved for the real world carvings and sculpture. Still welcoming one and all to our little ‘oasis by the airport’ here in Aspen. And most importantly of all, still looking forward to future advancement and expansions. So, how’s that for a positive outlook, eh?
Welcome to THE KMJ
The Place where Natural Stone Comes to Life
Please Come in
We are Open 3 to 6 pm Weekdays and by Appointment
I know what you’re thinking. Why such odd, short hours? And that’s a good question. But there is a good reason why these are actually such sensible and advantageous hours for us to open to the public.
For I am still, to this day, an active and eager stone carver, or sculptor, whichever way you wish to look at it, and therefore the hours in the day right up until three in the afternoon are very dear to me.
Obviously, I will stop what I am doing and greet everyone with a cheery tour of the gallery, pretty much any time that is convenient for you. Just give me a call at 970 319 1070, or email email@example.com, and we’ll get something set up. But please, please, I beg of you, don’t text me. (I own a flip phone, just to let you know).
One of the most visible diferences to evolve through the years has been the gradual formation of what we have come to know as The Patio. What began as a barren patch of heavily poluted, dry packed dirt devoid of any form of life, and scantily covered with a thin layer of torchered yellow grass, has blossomed over the years into the nifty and adaptable display space that you see today. For within this tiny space we not only get to rotate a regular display of carvings and sculpture, but also showcase such iconic pieces as The Leaning Tower of Woody Creek, Green Man Solar Fountain, Three Faces Standing Stone, The Ice Palace Snowgoyles, (to name a few), but also present the work in a lovely garden/patio setting.
Also, there are just some sculptures that just don’t look right indoors as they need the effect of direct sunlight to bring them to life… such as Top o’ th’ World pictured here. Quite honestly, he just doesn’t look the same under unnatural light. You just don’t get the same feeling indoors as when the sun works her way around those jagged peaks. Nor does the indoor light do justice to the many splendid colors and textures presented by the various shiny minerals locked within his mighty bulk. Which is another reason I leave him out here – no one is likely to run off with him, and as his purpose is to prove the exception to the rule, unlike every one of The67 Collection Series Sculpture, that was carved to be easily picked up and moved around, Top o’ th’ World was created to do no such thing.
In fact, I carved this piece precisely to illustrate the huge, problematic weight that marble posesses, weighing in as it does at over 170 lbs for a single 12 by 12 by 12 inch piece. Yes, that’s right. Marble is very, very heavy – as this piece readily testifies. Indeed, I literally carved it precisely to illustrate the many advantages brought about by my revolutionary light, portable Curvilinear marble sculpture, as each carving may be easily picked up and moved around, as I myself have done, so many, many times. But not this one. No way. So here he sits, regal, resplendant and impervious to his surroundings.
Close examination of his features will carry you away to our nearby Elk Mountain Range, nestled right in the middle of the highest peaks of Colorado’s Rock Mountains. For that is what Top o’ th’ World is meant to do – to take your mind back to the slopes, back to the Rockies, and back to the natural splendor of the snow-topped mountains. And the closer you look, the more and more you will see.
Joining Top o’ th’ World on his display bench have been a number of sculptures and carvings over the summer, including the larger marble bowls, one or two beasts, along with an assortment of limestone carvings.
Green Man Solar Fountain has had one heck of a summer, I can tell you. Right from the very off he has been enjoying an epic summer season – simply stunning at times, what with his bushy moss and grass hair do and watercress, moss and clover beard.
Of course, being a solar powered fountain, Green Man is one carving of mine that is particularly tricky to capture doing what he does best: turning the constantly evolving stream of sunlight into a constantly changing stream of water. And so here are two short videos of him at work, or play, whichever way you look at it.
Although these two videos are not the greatest of quality, they should give you some idea of Green Man’s impact on THE KMJ Patio. And as you will hear, at times such proximity to a busy road and airport can make for a rather noisy environment. Never-the-less, Greeny always does his level best to distract the ear from such egregious commotion with his gentle soothing rippling stream of refreshing water.
And so, turning our attention away from the patio let’s now step through the doorway and take a look at the studio gallery and how it has taken to The Summer of 22.
One of the first noticeable changes for The Summer of 22 is the addition of THE KMJ Gift Shop to your right as you enter the gallery.
Although mostly centered around the candles, vases, and accessories that serve to make THE KMJ Stone Flights and Mounts so very, very useful in bringing soft, warm candlelight to any evening gathering or event, the shop also includes a selection of decorative, practical, new and vintage items, the variety an originality of which may just surprise you. And all for sale at a very reasonable price.
Which brings me to the little matter of our new line of KMJ Wall Art in the form of wrapped canvas prints, the images of which are drawn from the 10,800 martincooney.com media library.
The subject matter of the prints varies wildly, from this set of beasts, to micro images of flowers, to The Leaning Tower of Pisa, and much more.
KMJ Wrapped Canvas Prints are easy to hang, safe (in the chance that they should fall) and a lot of fun to place here and there around your world.
So, now let’s take a look at the Studio Gallery.
Although the layout of the gallery has remained pretty much the same, we have added many new items to our inventary over the past year or so.
Kris and I are always looking to make THE KMJ more fun and interesting with each addition to our Stoneworks concept. Even to the point of bringing in some items that aren’t even stone! Such as this wonderful African figure. Well, he just seemed to fit in so well, what with him and Boogieman getting along so well.
Newest of the new arrivals take the form of tiny Stone Rock Climbers. I’ll post more about these little fellas in a future post, for at the moment I am still perfecting their style and form, but the early results have shown promise.
And with that, we draw our Summer of 22 KMJ Stoneworks Studio Gallery Tour. I hope that you liked what you saw and will someday give us a visit, because there is nothing like seeing the sculpture and carvings for yourself, as pictures just don’t ever seem to do the work justice, in my opinion.
I’ll leave you with a few pictures that Kris and I took of each other earlier this week as we celebrated her birthday whilst enjoying some of the most perfect weather, ever.
OK, that’s about it for now. I hope that you are enjoying, or have enjoyed a lovely summer. I also hope that I will be able to show you around THE KMJ someday in the not too distant future.
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The Summer of 22 KMJ Stoneworks Studio Gallery Tour
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Thanks for visiting martincooney.com
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