Gulfport, FL – Since its debut as Gulfport’s first curated fine arts gallery in several years last May, Brenda McMahon Gallery has been warmly welcomed by the artists and arts loving residents that comprise the town’s unique character. Through monthly First Friday Art Walk events, emerging and professional artists both local and national have been introduced onto the local arts scene and the Gallery’s preview opening for ArtJones, one of the region’s leading artists’ collectives, was a highlight of the holiday arts season.
In the past twelve months, the gallery has given many professional and emerging artists opportunities for exposure and experience, with a new artist featured at each month’s First Friday Art Walk, as well as providing a home to works from dozens of artists. It has also become a gathering spot for the town’s arts loving community on the first Friday evening of each month.
“‘I’ve always wanted to close the gap between the maker and the collector by sharing a joy of process and final outcome at our art walks and other events,” says owner Brenda McMahon. “The gallery has managed to build a stronger foundation for that mutual appreciation. I have shared my artists’ glass making techniques, clay ideas and mixed media styles with visitors who didn’t know what to ask, but loved what they saw. That information helps people understand an art mind as well as an art process.”
Two weeks ago, McMahon debuted the Brenda McMahon Gallery’s online collection. In addition to being a celebration of the gallery’s first year, the online gallery also provides a revenue stream to the artists it represents and a way for an arts-loving community to support its artists in our current economic situation.
Arts lovers in May will find ten percent off of all pieces of art in the new online gallery, as well as free local pick-up and delivery for its extensive collection of fine arts and contemporary crafts, designer jewelry and wearable art. Included in the collection are ceramic works and jewelry by McMahon herself, glass artists Diane Bragg and Doug Merritt, painters Anna Ayres and Nancy Poucher, fiber artist and watercolorist Dawn Waters, and wood creations by Zoe Bocik of Funktionhouse Urban Lumber in St. Petersburg, just to name a few.
“If you build it, they’ll come,” says McMahon. ”As an artist I’ve made a living on this belief and so far, it’s allowed me a vibrant way to be in the world. I’m entering my 25th year as a full time ceramic artist and now Covid-19 is pushing me once again, to be pliable in an ever changing world. I took the pandemic as an opportunity to put the more than 170 works of art in The Gallery online. Now visitors can purchase art 24/7 by visiting BrendaMcMahonGallery.com and shopping online.”
Over the last year, the arts loving community in Gulfport has been welcoming of the gallery and of McMahon’s efforts to provide a space to so many artists in different mediums under one roof.
“I am personally grateful to the more than a dozen people who have commissioned me to create ceramic art pieces just for them – and for the hundreds of sales we’ve had from $25 items to $4,000 art pieces. I designed a gallery that has art for everyone and everyone seems to be appreciating that vision,” she added.
Moving forward, McMahon has several plans for her namesake gallery and for the arts community in Gulfport.
“A new vision is taking root at Brenda McMahon Gallery in Gulfport,” she says. “For the next 12 months, I envision expanding our art openings and the number of artists represented. I am also working on a ’Taste of Art’, creative workshops for those who want to experience the ‘touch’ of art. Gulfport is a true artist enclave community where collectors and makers live elbow to elbow and each appreciate the other. Our new ‘Taste of Art’ workshops will make that friendship even more interesting while being another exciting opportunity to really experience art in Gulfport.”
Brenda McMahon Gallery is located at 2901 Beach Boulevard S. in downtown Gulfport and can be found online at http://brendamcmahon.com/Gallery/ and on social media outlets @BrendaMcMahonGallery.