Inspired by the Tetons
A new gallery features the work of dozens of local artists.
// By Jim Mahaffie
Thousands of visitors coming through the Moose entrance of Grand Teton National Park turn into the Dornan’s complex to grab a sandwich, rental bike, tank of gas, bottle of wine, and pizza, all with the fabulous view of the Grand. Thanks to ArtShop, which opened last May, Dornan’s visitors can now also find a creative keepsake from a local artist or maker. “I know from working at galleries in Jackson visitors say they seek out local art and out-of-the-way places like us,” says ArtShop owner Alex Pope. “And we’re right there in the moment that they’re in their Grand Tetons experience.”
As soon as she heard the building at Dornan’s that had been occupied by the gear shop Moosely Seconds Mountaineering for almost 40 years was available, Pope, who spent seven years at Tayloe Piggott Gallery (first as director of art and then director of the gallery) and was project coordinator at Jackson Hole Public Art, knew what she wanted to do with the space. “I’ve watched as galleries and events became more exclusive, shutting out many local artists and makers that often have other jobs and a unique medium,” she says. “Anyone that works around town knows it’s expensive to be here, so we have all these artists with nowhere to show. We also have thousands of tourists coming into that park entrance who may want to buy something more commemorative than a t-shirt or a hat.”
I know from working at galleries in Jackson visitors say they seek out local art and out-of-the-way places like us.”–ArtShop owner Alex Pope
ArtShop has a rotating collection of work from about 50 local creatives. “We have some wonderful larger pieces, but we’re also thinking of what fits in your suitcase and is easy to get home,” Pope says. Prices range from around $60 to $250.
Natalie Connell finds magic in the mountains around Jackson Hole and brings this feeling to her landscape watercolor and oil paintings, which often feature the Tetons as their subject. “I find deep peace and connection with the natural world and myself through time spent in the mountains,” she says. “It’s from this place and perspective that I create my work and care to express from.” ArtShop stocks smaller original watercolors and note cards of her larger pieces.@natalieconnell_art
Ellen Stryker loves textiles, and ArtShop patrons love her one-of-a-kind bandana designs. “My inspiration comes from small cool brands I keep an eye on, and lots of Japanese influence, like sashiko, a traditional Japanese embroidery style,” Stryker says. She worked with Pope to create a series of bandanas for ArtShop that have a Western twist, such as a print of a cowgirl tipping her hat and a big ‘Howdy.’ Another series features indigo-dyed and block-printed bandanas. @stryker_made
“Alex wandered into my festival booth one day and explained her gallery idea. I said sign me up,” says Fred Kingwill, who has been Jackson Hole’s resident watercolorist for decades and is a fixture at any and all local art fairs, including participating annually in the National Museum of Wildlife Art’s Plein Air Fest, Etc. (which is always held the third Saturday of June). “ArtShop offers quality work that brings joy to visitors and representation to so many good local artists.” An art teacher in addition to a painter, Kingwill’s deep and obvious love of wild places, plants, and animals shows in his work. fredkingwill.com
Anika Youcha creates art in many different media, and ArtShop sells her woodblock prints and ceramic mugs. “Anika made us an edition of 100 black-and-white prints of the Tetons and 250 mugs for water or wine with lots of versatility,” Pope says. Originally from Minnesota, Youcha has spent more than two decades living, working, and creating artwork in Jackson Hole. Red and green colorblind, Youcha makes this quirk an interesting element in her work. An example: She doesn’t paint all fall leaves orange. anikayoucha.com JH