A new art gallery is coming to town, and it aims to turn on its head so much of what most people envision when they think of an art gallery. Bluff/Blue Door Gallery, located at 152 Bluff St. in Akron, will open its doors to the public on Saturday, Nov. 7, from 5 to 9 p.m., during the Akron Artwalk. The show will run until Nov. 21.
Bluff/Blue Door’s premiere show features two artists who are Akron favorites. Several of renowned painter John Sokol’s pieces will be on display, and the creations of assemblage artist Bret Hines also will be featured. The work of the two artists combines to create a beautiful, cohesive presentation.
The man responsible for Bluff/Blue Door, Michael Owen, shared the unique vision he has for the space. “I wanted it to be off the beaten path, an alternative gallery that separates art from commerce and attracts the inherently curious.”
Owen, a self-described “urban pioneer,” has been at the forefront of creating – or recreating — some of Akron’s most unique spaces: Canal Place, the AES Building and Cascade Village, to name a few.
Bluff/Blue Door Gallery is in the cellar of Bluff House, built in 1914 and perched atop a hill that allows for glorious views. Do not let the word “cellar” fool you into imagining poor lighting. The house is situated on the side of the hill with a direct entrance from Bluff Street and plenty of light streaming in. Owen smartly embraced the space’s bare, stripped down features, and created a vibe that only be described as authentically Akron. He lit the space and installed the art in a way that allows each piece to stand on its own and feel as though the art has found its home at Bluff/Blue Door.
The outside of Bluff/Blue Door is magnificent as well, with sculpture created with repurposed materials. There is an array of stacked rocks throughout the property, and a fire pit positioned to make the most of that wonderful view.
As for the “off the beaten path” part, Owen says it is part of the experience. “I want the sights and sounds to resonate so much that people are drawn to it.”
Join Owen on Nov. 7 at Bluff/Blue Door Gallery to experience the sights and sounds for yourself.