Opening of a small free art gallery in Durango – the Durango Herald
“The Giving Circle” inspires to give, to receive
Pass through any neighborhood in Durango and you’ll likely stumble upon a small, free library: a freestanding, sometimes decorated wooden box that holds books you’re welcome to take out – and you can leave any you’ve already read.
Now, in addition to the libraries, you can also visit a small free art gallery, courtesy of artist / photographer Deborah Sussex, who has just opened a gallery at the end of her driveway.
As well as being an artist, Sussex, who moved to Durango with her husband, Michael Dietzman, in 2012 from Minnesota, is also a Certified Creativity Coach and Certified Teacher with the Mindful Life Program – it’s a program where she teaches mindfulness and meditation to adults so they can learn to live more mindfully, regardless of their status. It was through this work that she had the idea to create the gallery.
âThe Free Little Art Gallery that I started, I called it ‘The Giving Circle’, and it was really inspired by, through my mindfulness practice and my teaching, I was really inspired by the concept of giving and receiving, and driven by the virtuous cycle of giving and receiving and how it inspires generosity and how it fosters gratitude, âshe said. âIt really is an opportunity to feel gratitude; Gratitude is a practice of mindfulness and it opens us, at least there is this potential, to joy and compassion and appreciation for the life that sustains us.
For more information on Deborah Sussex’s Free Little Art Gallery, visit https://bit.ly/3q3YS24.
The Giving Circle operates exactly like a small, free library, Sussex said. His gallery is at the end of his driveway just outside of town in the Turtle Lake Valley. She said there is a place where drivers and cyclists can safely exit the road.
âThe Free Little Art Gallery is open all the time. There is a door; it’s still open. You can come anytime of the day and it’s a really nice little intimate space of intrigue, âSussex said. âYou can come and do several things: you can take advantage of the facility that is currently there; you can feel free to contribute or donate some of your creative work; you can feel free to receive, or to take, I like to call it âreceivingâ; and you can do both. You can do all three. There is this option for everyone. Everyone is welcome. Everyone, regardless of their age, is welcome to contribute to their creative work.
Sussex said the only time the gallery door will be locked is if she decides to put in place a small, permanent installation that will last for a few weeks. “But for the most part it will be open and in that space of giving and receiving, that’s the point.”
The gallery was officially opened on Halloween weekend, and much credit goes to Dietzman, a professional builder who built the Sussex gallery for his 60th birthday. She said it was he who brought her attention to an article on other free galleries and the two began to make a plan to create theirs.
And so far the response has been good, Sussex said.
âIt’s really fun for me as the curator of this little gallery. I go out into my driveway every day and take a look and I’m like, âOoooh! What was added? ‘ or ‘What found a new home? How wonderful that someone has chosen this room. ‘ Several things have come and gone, âshe said.
When it comes to quitting work at the gallery, people shouldn’t feel limited by subject matter – or even geography, Sussex said, adding that she accepts pieces from anywhere (check her site Web for shipping information). It’s also great when artists sign the back of their pieces, she said.
âEven if you don’t live here and aren’t able, at least for now, to come to the Giving Circle in person, you can still feel that feeling of generosity and gratitude when you send me something. to me and to me. “I will put it in the gallery on your behalf,” she said. âI’ve had a lot of people send me pieces from all over the place – and people I don’t even know. It’s a movement that is flourishing and I have an Instagram page for the Free Little Art Gallery in Durango and as a result people are finding out about it and other Free Little Art Galleries across the country and the world are finding out about it and it there are some shares there.
Along with the spirit of giving and receiving, Sussex also wants to inspire a spirit of accessibility in The Giving Circle.
âIt’s really a space that I want to make accessible to all those who want to express their creativity. And I think it’s important to note that sometimes people get locked into the idea that galleries are only for ‘real’ artists or professional artists, âshe said. âI have owned a gallery, I have worked in galleries, I have sold the work of other artists, I have found it incredibly rewarding to do this work, so at the same time, this little gallery is a bit more accessible to everyone and I love this idea.
âYou are only limited by your imagination; there may just be a multitude of types of media that can be brought in. I was talking to a young friend of mine who is studying physics and I said, ‘You know what? I have always liked math and physics equations on the board. Wouldn’t that be a nice piece to put on a piece of watercolor paper or something? And you just jot down an equation or something. It’s like a work of art in itself, âSussex said. âWe can go in so many directions with our creative endeavors. “