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Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Nature's Art; Shelley's Gifted Eye

Shelley with one of her gourd creations

Sometimes the stars get perfectly aligned and a product, and a person, and a place find each other. Shelley Harris-Janac gets to live in this serendipity every day at her shop in Calvert, Texas. She calls her constellation of creations Nature's  Art, and when you walk into the place, you know immediately that it is a special treat.

Shelley uses all natural materials... to captivating effect.
It's always a pleasure to meet another person who devotes their life to expressions of creativity. And especially a master craftsperson who is driven by a tangible vision. Shelley humbly and gracefully waits on her customers as if she were just a cordial cashier, but if you hang around awhile, she will begin to explain the challenges of her works. Gourds, antlers, pine needles, in the hands of most people would be unrelated, useless rubbish. She looks at these same things and sees... the bones of a beautiful thing.
The gourds take months to cure and prepare. She has some, so wonderful and complete, she will not even modify them.

My brother and I discovered her shop one Saturday evening almost at closing time, and she was still gracious enough to convey a big shot of inspiration to both of us. She advertises "art, antiques and uncommon treasures."

Cut, carved, and dressed with woven pine needles, this gourd has a new life as a magnificent art piece.

But her fabulous constructions from nature are what left me smitten. I purchased one of her natural leaf arrangements, and then had to decide which of my beloved to give it to for Christmas...the other was bound to be jealous.

I could have stared at this undersea fantasy made of leaves... for hours, but it was the end of the day.
Shelley could almost redefine the term "native American," but I'll leave that alone. Still, such exquisite work is worthy of every context of the term. 

She takes a deer antler... and reinterprets it in a wonderful way...

This is world class talent... worthy of note, worthy of a place in your home... and available just down the road.

 Sonny Moss happened to pop in at closing time, and we posed for this unusual picture; Three Brazos Valley artists who manage their own shops and make themselves available to the general public. In just a couple of weeks, that was no longer true... Good luck guys!

Go check out Shelley's precious gallery... and say "Hi" for me. And BUY something!

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