Fri, Feb 17th, 2017

Coconut Grove 2017

Our first show this year was Coconut Grove, in Miami. This is one of " best shows" in the nation with well over 3000 applications from artists to fill 350 spots at the show. Usually we do the coconut Grove show, and then follow that up with the Naples international show the following week. However, this year the Naples show apparently missed their permit application date and had to hold their show the same weekend as Coconut Grove. Although many of our friends made the drive over from Naples to Miami, we still missed many of our friends from Naples.
We always enjoy seeing all our old friends in the Miami area and we often make new friends from all over the world at the show. For example, last year we sold several pieces to a lovely couple to furnish their new home in Switzerland.
Visit started with a wonderful dinner with Ron McGill of the Miami zoo and his beautiful wife,Rita.Besides being one of the most knowledgable and successful conservationists on the planet, Ron has been both an inspiration and mentor helping us manage Arts For Animals.They took us to an incredible steakhouse where we had a Brontosaurus sized Ribeye .( the "leftovers" of which we ate for dinner the following 3 nights). It was delicious and we always really enjoy seeing Ron and Rita and trading travel and animal stories.
Another one of the high points for us this year was getting to know our hosts at the air B&B we stayed in. Phil and Suzy Stapelton. Both Phil and Susie are artists and have created a lovely retreat only a few blocks from the show near the Coconut Grove waterfront.We used our new bikes and rode to and from the show each day.Each night we sat outside under the stars and flowering bougainvillea and traded stories with Phil,Suzy and their interesting neighbors.
It was an interesting coincidence that author,Larry Kritcher, lives across the street.Larry was an airline pilot between 1950 and 1980 and used his airline privileges to visit every corner of the world. He wrote of his adventures with his wife Rita and is working on his second book. The real coincidence is that Rita told us that it was a conversation they had with us 2 years before,at the 2015 Coconut Grove festival , that encouraged them to visit Namibia last year and Larry had included us in the first chapter of his latest book chronicling that trip!
Ya never know who you'll meet at art shows!

The weather was perfect and well over 100,000 people attended the show
The weather was perfect and well over 100,000 people attended the show
The weather was perfect and well over 100,000 people attended the show
Lately I've been doing more small paintings- this one is 24
Lately I've been doing more small paintings- this one is 24" x 24"
Lately I've been doing more small paintings- this one is 24" x 24"
Although smaller( 24
Although smaller( 24" x 24") I used a unique texture design on this one.
Although smaller( 24" x 24") I used a unique texture design on this one.
This is Phil and Suzy in front of their lovely cottage
This is Phil and Suzy in front of their lovely cottage
Originally Phil was a stonemason and was considered " Mason to the stars" for many years while he lived and worked in Beverly Hills.
This is Phil and Suzy in front of their lovely cottage
We often with Suzy and Phil and one of our artists friends Crystal Martinez
We often with Suzy and Phil and one of our artists friends Crystal Martinez
Susie was a set designer in the Paris fashion world and is an incredible cook.
We often with Suzy and Phil and one of our artists friends Crystal Martinez
Our lovely little bungalow  of artistic creations and creative interior design
Our lovely little bungalow of artistic creations and creative interior design
What a wonderful discovery! Meeting such interesting ,creative folks is one of the things we like about staying at bed-and-breakfasts!
Our lovely little bungalow of artistic creations and creative interior design
This piece was actually the night table in our room.
This piece was actually the night table in our room.
This piece was actually the night table in our room.
Phil has exhibited his pieces at shows all over the  planet .
Phil has exhibited his pieces at shows all over the planet .
His use of found objects, custom metalwork, and rare antiques is visually stunning.
Phil has exhibited his pieces at shows all over the planet .
When we left we hated to go.
When we left we hated to go.
Each evening it was nice to return to the serenity and camaraderie of the Stapleton compound.
When we left we hated to go.