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8 Ways to Arrange Artwork

2/12/2016 1:38 PM

Today's blog post comes from the interior design site Houzz. Below are some truly amazing ways to hang artwork, from a single piece, to 20. Enjoy!

Posted By Mary

Houston Llew Tiles in the Home

When decorating the home with artwork, there are multiple things to consider. Is your goal to acquire pieces that will increase in value over the years? Do you want to fill your home with art that matches your décor? Is there a specific feeling you want your artwork to emote?

All of these are perfect reasons to buy artwork; it just all comes down to what YOU want out of your art buying experience! For Heidi, the desire to feel inspired on a daily basis is the end goal, so she collects Houston Llew Spiritiles to add a bit of wit and motivation to her walls. Whether it’s to create a little self-assurance to daily life or spur a trip to the beach, her Spiritiles keep her positive and add charm to her surroundings.

From family-oriented sayings, to famous quotes, to humorous remarks, Houston Llew Spiritiles make fantastic inspirational art pieces because of their ability to relate to anyone and everyone. With a current collection of over 75 designs and unique sayings, there are tiles that appeal to every personality and lifestyle.

Collecting artwork that inspires you is more than just a financial investment, small or large. At the end of the day, buying artwork is about surrounding yourself with what you love, and the inspiration you feel because of it makes the whole art buying process worth it.

To see Houston’s entire collection of current tiles and the retired tiles we have at the gallery, click here.

Posted By Mary

Pantone Color of the Year: Rose Quartz and Serenity

Spoiler alert, the winner is actually a combination of TWO colors! This year, Pantone has chosen to feature both “Rose Quartz” and “Serenity” as the color of the year, creating a lovely blend of warm and cool that exudes peace and tranquility.


Taken directly from Pantone’s website:

“For the first time Pantone introduces two shades, Rose Quartz and Serenity as the Pantone Color of the Year 2016. Rose Quartz is a persuasive yet gentle tone that conveys compassion and a sense of composure. Serenity is weightless and airy, like the expanse of the blue sky above us, bringing feeling of respite and relaxation even in turbulent times.”

“Whether in soft or hard surface material, the pairing of Rose Quartz and Serenity brings calm and relaxation. Appealing in all finishes, matte, metallic and glossy, the engaging combo joins easily with other mid-tones including greens and purples, rich browns, and all shades of yellow and pink. Add in silver or hot brights for more splash and sparkle.”

 Learn more about these wonderful colors here: Pantone Color of the Year 2016


When pairing these colors with artwork, don’t feel that you have to stick to a pastel palette. Incorporating elements of “Rose Quartz” and “Serenity” helps keep the artwork cohesive with the space, but steer clear from too much of either. Look for pieces that are expressive and lyrical, like Anna Razumovskaya’s “Auburn Melody” or ones that are bold, yet continue the feeling of tranquility like Alexander Volkov’s “Emerald Bay Sunrise”. Here you can see how two very different styles and subject matters can work for a space of this color combination without making things seem monotonous!

Anna Razumovskaya's "Auburn Melody"

"Auburn Melody" by Anna Razumovskaya


Alexander Volkov's "Emerald Bay Sunrise"

"Emerald Bay Sunrise" by Alexander Volkov

Posted By Mary

Large Vase by Tim LazerJapanese Maple Vessel by Stephen SchlanserTurquoise Vase by David Thai

Some of the most popular artwork we have at the gallery is the wide variety of beautiful hand-made art glass. From glasswork created in the traditional kilns of Italy to those produced 20 minutes away downtown, we pride ourselves on the quality and selection of these luminous statement pieces.

It’s worth noting that I mention these pieces are “hand-made”. That doesn’t mean no machines were used in production, but instead refers to the fact that between cutting the glass, polishing the edges, laying out the design, sandblasting, applying precious metals for select finishes, and ultimately firing, there is much hand work involved. Many of the glass pieces we carry required at least 5 craftspeople to complete!

With the amount of handwork and steps it takes to create even one piece of glass art, many of these pieces are susceptible to slight flaws and imperfections, especially if precious metals or other applications are required for the finish. Flaws may present themselves as dark spots, lines in the finish, or possibly even small bubbles. This is the result of working with highly sensitive materials that react to microscopic contaminants in the environment.

While glass artists always try to keep these flaws to a bare minimum through the use of filtration systems and clean working environments, the artwork is created in a glass studio, not a sterile environment. Believe it or not, there will almost always be very slight flaws and imperfections in glass artwork!

With this small bit of information on how hand-made art glass is created, we hope that you’ll have a better understanding of the facts and procedures in producing beautiful hand-made art glass, helping you to appreciate and enjoy every piece along with the slight flaws that appear as a result of it being “hand-made”.

Adapted from “Facts & Flaws” by Stephen Schlanser Glass Studio

Versaille Vase by Stephen Schlanser

Posted By Mary

Caring for Your Serigraph

12/30/2015 5:44 PM

You’ve just left a gallery with your first ever fine art purchase: a serigraph print by your favorite artist. You carefully set it down in the back seat of your car and drive below the speed limit so that it doesn’t accidentally move in ways it shouldn’t. Once home, you move it in its sleeve to the kitchen table to admire the brand new treasure. As the euphoria of buying something wonderful and expensive slowly recedes, you realize that you have no idea what to do next! How do you care for this piece of art?

Have no fear! Here is a handy guide of best practices for serigraphy care:

  • When handling your piece before it is framed, use both hands to help avoid creating any creases in the paper or varnish in the case of a canvas print.
  • Get the serigraph framed by a qualified fine art framer. You can find a good framer at a local gallery or specialty frame shop. If your print is on paper, you need to make sure that all materials used in the framing process are acid-free. Non acid-free mats will cause a chemical reaction with the print and cause discoloration. A qualified fine art framer will know the importance of museum-quality framing.
  • Keep your serigraph away from moisture of any kind (this includes rooms with high humidity, such as bathrooms). Whether your print is on paper or canvas, liquids are a big no no! And definitely steer clear of solvents! All you need to clean a canvas print is a fine feather duster.
  • Do not spray the back of a canvas print with water to tighten it on its stretcher bars. While this is a technique used for tightening oil paintings, it can be very detrimental to the piece if it is a serigraph or other print. If the canvas loosens, have it restretched by your fine art framer. 
  • Avoid hanging the print in a location that received direct sunlight or high reflective light. Sunlight will damage the color of the piece and can severely fade it over time. This doesn’t mean you have to hang your piece in a room without windows, though. 

The first thing you’ll think is “Will this process be expensive?” Possibly. The cost of framing will depend on the size of the serigraph, as well as the type of frame, matting, and glass you choose. You may also want to invest in having a professional art installer come out to the house and hang the framed piece. But when the piece is framed and hung correctly, the upkeep is minimal and you can sit back and relax knowing that these steps will help you keep your serigraph print as bright and beautiful as the day you walked out of that gallery with it.  

Posted By Mary

Let's Celebrate Winter

12/23/2015 12:21 PM

With winter officially here, it’s time to celebrate the beauty of the season through art! From Pieter Bruegel the Elder’s “The Hunters in the Snow” and John Whorf’s “Winter, East Boston”, to Alexander Volkov’s “Daybreak”, we can see examples of what makes winter a great season. Camaraderie, ice-skating, sunsets over the snowfall—these are things that make the coldest months of the year enjoyable.

Here is an assortment of some of our favorite winter pieces from the past:

Pieter Bruegel the Elder: "The Hunters in the Snow"

Pieter Bruegel the Elder: “The Hunters in the Snow”

With all of the rich colors in this painting, you can really get a sense of the chilly environment surrounding the subjects as they head out on their day of hunting.


John Whorf: "Winter, East Boston"

John Whorf: “Winter, East Boston

The watercolor brushstrokes of this piece create a wonderful energy that helps to accentuate the fun the children are having on the ice.


Childe Hassam: "A Winter Fairyland"

Childe Hassam: “A Winter Fairyland”

Perhaps using yellows and oranges to paint a winter scene may be unconventional, but it creates a really interesting atmosphere that makes you automatically think of late afternoon flurry.


And here are some from our own artists:

Alexander Volkov: "Daybreak"

Alexander Volkov: “Daybreak”

With the outstanding use of complementary colors, Volkov has really made this winter scene inviting to the viewer. It seems to be a space that is perfectly at peace.


Alexei Butirskiy: "Boulevard at Midnight"

Alexei Butirskiy: “Boulevard at Midnight”

The hustle and bustle of the holiday season winds down in this European city and we can just take a moment to admire the lights against the nightly snowfall.


Michelle Courier: "Winter Light"

Michelle Courier: “Winter Light”

The way that Michelle places her brushstrokes to create her landscape paintings is truly an amazing thing to behold up close. With such a range of colors in this painting, you can really feel the winter sunlight sifting in through the tree branches as it begins its slow decent in the sky.

Posted By Mary

2015: A Year in Review

12/16/2015 1:30 PM

As the year comes to a close and we begin making plans and resolutions for 2016, we can’t help but take a moment to reflect on the excitement that 2015 brought to the gallery. Between the launch of our brand new website and numerous events and exhibitions, we have had our hands full! Here are some of our most memorable highlights:


  • - Gabe Leonard made a stop to Art Leaders Gallery for his “Desperados” tour! We had an absolute blast meeting the cinematic artist and taking the chance to delve deeper into his creative process and the plans for his upcoming series.

  • - Hello new website! We were thrilled to debut our completely renovated website to the world, making the process of acquiring fine art that much easier!

Gabe Leonard Creating a Collector's Sketch


  • - The gallery was chosen to be on the judging committee of Art Design Consultant’s annual “Art Comes Alive” event in Cincinnati! Bonnie and Mary took a trip down to Ohio to visit the impressive gallery space and mingle with some remarkable talent for the event’s opening and awards ceremony.

Opening Reception of "Art Comes Alive" in Cincinnati


  • - We held our first after-hours event since initiating our new Gallery Rental Program. The retirement party for a renowned Detroit anesthesiologist held nearly 150 people, was professionally catered, and even utilized a dance floor and DJ!


  • - Local sculptor, Jerry Soble, held his final artist exhibition with us in conjunction with the Friendship Circle of Michigan. With a relaxing retirement ahead for Jerry, we are thankful he chose us as his venue to raise money for the charity and get the chance to unite his remaining sculptures with eager collectors.


  • - To get our clients ready for the holiday season, we held an extensive Trunk Show and Holiday Sale, with over 50 new pieces brought into the gallery showroom! 

  • - With the help of Michigan artist Michelle Courier and the expertise of a local catering company, we held an amazing evening event for the local branch of a national investment company. Between Michelle’s stunning artwork and charisma, and the to-die-for buffet of Detroit inspired food, all 75 guests left the gallery that evening cheerful and satisfied.

Financial Event at Art Leaders Gallery


What will 2016 bring? Who know, but we are very excited to see what is in store for the gallery and the rest of the design world in the upcoming year. 

Posted By Mary

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