Not too long ago I expressed my frustration with the art scene in San Miguel de Allende as I had encountered it to that point and given the ballyhoo about it. I was having difficulty finding public exhibitions of interest. I vowed to start walking into commercial galleries more often and risk the snooty treatment from the help. I had no idea at the time what a great decision I had made.
The latest commercial gallery that I walked into is The Gleason Gallery Studio at No. 26, calle Aldama. It was a feast. Lynne Gleason works in a variety of media.
Oils, and sometimes that beautifully gunky stuff, the name of which I cannot recall.
Her specialty, her money maker subject, is obviously the horse. Her oils, watercolors, and pencil drawings of horses display an obviously remarkable knowledge of the musculature of the horse--the tangible and general--and a feeling for the spirit and personality of individuals--the intangible and particular. This grasp of the subject is just as apparent in her more abstract bronze sculptures of the horse.
One of my wives was fascinated with horses. I was not, although I have found here that I still enjoy riding. Nor was I enamored with the whole financial catastrophe that always accompanies a fascination with horses. But I learned things from that wife nonetheless. That background provided me with a greater framework for appreciating these works than I otherwise might have had.
The other wives will have to wait a while for their credits from me here.
In the nineties Lynne Gleason did a series of watercolors, pencil drawings, and oils of the Queen of England's horses, prints of which were incorporated in an official book of photographs and texts relating to the Queen's Calvary, the King's Horsemen, and the whole royal stable, as a matter of fact. The Royal family were obviously at least as impressed with her work as I was. Not that I defer to the Royal family's taste in all things, mind you.
Not only is the volume and quality of her work impressive, her gallery itself is beautifully done, well appointed wall to wall and ceiling to floor. She herself is a fetching personality. I happened to have the opportunity to meet her in her gallery, and we enjoyed a chat with rewards for me. She had to decline to be photographed on this occasion for reasons I am not at liberty to disclose here. Some other time she will oblige me. You can find a photograph of her under “About the Artist” at the link above.
If this sort of thing interests you, too, then be sure to check out the photos of some of her large format works at her web site.
As for the snooty help, there was none of the sort. Rather, the gallery was manned by Adriana, Lynne Gleason's administrative assistant, confidante, and go-to person. Adriana is knowledgeable, charming, nearly overwhelmingly vivacious, and anything but snooty. A woman of taste who enjoys sharing her knowledge of local artists and their work, and she has done so with me. Yet, she had to know from the first that I no longer have discretionary thousands to spend given the condition of my boots alone. Perhaps she will be my entrée into the world of legitimate art here. I hope.
Much more importantly to me, I believe it is safe to say that Adriana and I are now friends. She is one of those persons who abruptly and unexpectedly enters our lives, and a friendship develops. And we quickly become immensely proud to claim that person as a friend. I must not be the only one who feels that way about Adriana. Apparently, everyone, including the butcher, the baker, and the candlestick maker, in San Miguel de Allende knows Adriana.