Artist Receptions – Engaged in the Community

By: Taylor Hein, Doctor’s Assistant and Scribe

Every seven to eight weeks for the last 17 years, Eclectic Eye has hosted an opening reception for a local artist. These receptions typically involve refreshing beverages, as well as food spreads for patrons to enjoy as they view the new art pieces, meet the artist and browse independent eyewear frames after hours. For the following two months, each artist has his or her pieces hanging on our walls for sale. This is often exciting for the employees and regular customers because the art is always rotating, giving the store and our frames a different look and feel.

It is such a unique experience every time an artist walks through the doors of Eclectic Eye to plan and envision how their works of art will adorn the walls of 242 South Cooper St. The process of the artist evaluating the space and determining how to display their precious pieces within the confines of the store has always amazed me. From the time I began working at Eclectic Eye, I have seen art mediums ranging from photography, terrariums, woodworking, ceramics and “mixed material” pieces.

Even though the walls filled with art are constantly changing, each artist’s pieces never fail to focus on the frames we carry. Earth tones from Melissa Bridgeman’s pottery highlighted our Krewe frames’ unique tortoise silhouettes. Likewise, Martha Kelly’s iconic photography of Memphis landmarks animated our selection of Francis Klein frames, and Ron Olson’s mixed media works, combined with playful Theo frames, brought to life the unique shapes and vibrant colors of each eyewear piece.

The ever-evolving lineup of artwork reminds me that change is always happening. We are not “just an eyeglass store,” but a gallery with a unique inventory and a carefully curated selection of frames. With each art show rotation, I am reminded that different art pieces resonate symbiotically with different frames.

Art isn’t a trend and art movements do not happen with just one artist. I love when customers ask for a “one-of-a-kind” frame; a frame that expresses their personality, helps define the way they see the world and how the world sees them. I feel excited to work for a company that supports the arts, and to serve individuals who support the artisans and craftspeople that make the products we carry when wearing our frames.

Stop by the store today and let one of our eyewear architects help you find the perfect frame to meet your visual expectations. Our next art opening reception, honoring Norwood Creech, will be Friday, February 15, from 6 to 8 p.m.