To listen to Kelly Kuhn, owner/director of Blue Gallery interacting with visitors exemplifies everything organic in the process of presenting visual art. With a hammer in one hand, assessing the position of one painting to another, and her dog Stella at her feet, she brings the purity of observation back into the hands of the onlooker–something so often lost in commercial galleries.
The way Kelly and partner David Kuhn conduct the business behind the art is just as compelling in its’ simplicity. “We work with our artists with the same tools as our collectors–we use integrity, honesty, and quality in every decision we make.” says Kelly. “My philosophy is a result of twenty years working with professional artists and collectors. Over all, David and I have always strived to provide an open perspective for everyone who walks through our door.”
“You can never pigeonhole what inspires you,” Kelly says. “I once fell irrationally in love with a painting of a tractor in a wheat field. I love seeing that passion in my collectors. They never leave the gallery with a piece they feel only so-so about.” There is a common thread throughout the work of Blue Gallery artists. The abstract, the portraits, the color and light, the tangible inspiration stemming from the honesty in humanity. In effect, the essence of life that inspires us with integrity and delight. As the world speeds by with technology advancements and instant gratification Blue Gallery entices the audience with true aesthetic, embracing individuality at a slow pace; juxtaposing landscape and lifestyle with the idea that less is more.
In these times of economic decline and a tighter hold on the consumer dollar Blue Gallery has thrived with a savvy sense of business, addressing the new challenges. “One thing we’ve always offered that’s made a big difference for collectors is a lay-away option.” Says Kelly. When the now very popular Crossroads Arts District in the Downtown area of Kansas City first began, a lot of galleries were not open every First Friday night. “I have always believed that consistency and spontaneity can thrive together to benefit our artists.” Since opening in 2000, Blue has never missed a First Friday night and consistently has a fresh exhibition on the walls.” Most admirable is the philanthropic philosophy. Blue Gallery continues to give back to the community by hosting events for regional and international causes. “Our artists and clients are our friends; they trust us, know us, and know we will work hard for them, the art, and the world we live in.”
Representing 40+ emerging, and established local and nationally known artists with works placed in private and public collections worldwide; Blue Gallery holds several formal exhibitions a year and is continuously reviewing art submissions for a fresh perspective of classic subject-matter as well as works unique in narrative, execution and media. The end result is that Blue Gallery has placed quality work all over the world and is a poignant tribute to artists, collectors, and the community they thrive in.