Animal Lovers: Check out this Special Giveaway

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Herbert, 2012

Do you love animals? Is there a special pet in your life that makes every day even better?

Artist Lesli Devito, blogger at My Old Country House, creates works that any animal lover would ‘aww’ over. She has a knack for capturing the personalities of all kinds of creatures and even does custom pet portraits. The Virginia-based artist also depicts outdoor scenes such as the special way the sunshine hits a barn. Lesli shares:

"I do live in the country but the country is just my jumping off point and my hope is that my Art takes you to a destination that only you know. A place that makes you happy. I feel that my work is successful if for even a second you are transported to a place that makes you smile.” 

Love her work? Enter to win $500 towards the purchase of any Lesli Devito piece.

Click here for more info on your chance to win! Contest ends Friday, April 25th. 

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Blizzard, 2014

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Fairview, 2012

New Guest Curator: Brown Paper Bag

Sara Barnes is the creator of the blog Brown Paper Bag, a visual playground that features illustration, embroidery, art objects and much, much more. She believes the best cre­ative think­ing hap­pens out­side of the gallery set­ting, and we couldn’t agree more.

It’s obvious she knows great art when she sees it, so we asked her to guest curate a collection for us. She made some great picks and we love the result! 

See some of her favorites below and check out the full collection here.

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David Arnoux, Huckleberry in Dailyland, #3, 2010

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Alex Ember, 152 fwy 2008, 2008

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Valerie Chiang, Wooden Puppet, 2012

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Lydia Kim, The Wait II, 2010

Art One on One: The Circus Life

Valerie Berta, Star., 2014

We love slowing down once in a while and really looking closely at one piece at a time. 

For our Art One on One posts, we choose one artwork and spend time with its colors, composition and context. For this post, we chose to focus on Valerie Berta’s photograph Star.

After being laid off, Valerie decided to join the circus and start her family there. She initially worked as a photojournalist, something that definitely shows in her work. Her photos sometimes look like documentary photography but with an artsy flair. Valerie credits Diane Arbus for being a huge influence on her work. 

It seems each of her photos come with a story. Star. captures a woman mid-stretch and offers a snapshot of her life. 

Valerie shares: 

Amina, a contortionist from Mongolia, stretches before her performance on the Kelly Miller Circus show. This photographer is part of an ongoing project on the circus and my life in it, called “The Mudshow Diaries.” The project delves into the lives and performances of circus artists intertwined with our family’s daily life.

We love the close-up on Amina and the way it really draws us into the features of her face. The bright red background jumps out against the black of Amina’s hair and her costume. She seems tranquil yet determined, ready for her performance. The dramatic shadows underneath her chin add an almost cinematic twist to the image. It’s a photo that makes us wish we were there to see the performance! 

What do you think about this piece? Check out more of Valerie’s work here.

5 UGallery Works to Celebrate Easter All Year

Spring is a great time to introduce some color to your home! Consider adding some Easter-related decor to your space with these adorable UGallery pieces. They’re sure to look great in your home all year round!

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Nicole Newsted, Peep Show No. 2, 2013

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Zefram Zef, Chrysalides and Unattended Eggs, 2010

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Chelsea Fisher, Single White Female, 2011

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Nicole Newsted, Corduroy Bunny, 2012

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Jennifer Ross, Woven with Care, 2012

New Art Thursday: The Great Outdoors

In this week’s new art, we noticed a lot of beautiful snapshots of the outdoors. From someone frolicking in the snow to an adorable pig wading through the water, these images got us in the mood to get outside and play. 

Peruse a few our favorites below and check out the full collection here. What’s your favorite? 

Gary Spetz, Many Glacier Lodge, 2014

Maria Plotnikova, Triple Somersault, 2013

Michael Busch, Winter Surf on Fire Island, 2014

Ronald Erskine, Scripps Pier, 2012

Chris Gug, Hog Heaven, 2013 

Eye on Interior Design: Christina Sanchez

Creating the perfect interior environment involves a few good elements and oftentimes someone to help you put all the pieces together. 

In our new series, Eye on Interior Design, we speak with interior designers about their passion, background and designing tips — especially when it comes to art! In this installment, we caught up with Christina Sanchez from fawn.

Christina loves seeing the potential in spaces and finding objects that really catch your eye. Keep reading to find out more about her! 

Tell us a little bit about what you do

I have a natural ability to visualize space and a passion for design. I use this to help people reimagine a space and bring new life to their homes and workspaces. My specialty is in renovating houses. I see a lot of homes from the 60’s and 70’s that need updating. I can almost instantly see the potential of a space and love helping people imagine and bring to life their dream home.

When did you first get interested in interior design?

When I was a kid. I would sit in a space a redesign it in my mind. My first memory of this is about age seven. Then I found myself doing this almost everywhere I went, observing details and thinking about ways I would change a room. I started reading Elle Decor when I was ten or so and always found myself in the design section of a book store paging through exotic design books. I was so thrilled when I found out that interior design was a job!

Your company is called ‘fawn’ and has a cute little deer logo. Where did you get the idea for the name?

I made it up! It describes two things. The first is the feeling you get when you see something special, just what you’re looking for, and it inspires you and stays with you. I’m all about finding that inspiration and using it in creating space. I thought this process related best to the term “fawning” over something.  

The second reason comes from my education. I studied Frank Lloyd Wright in college and wrote about the integration of nature into his designs. He had a philosophy that a home should feel like a fawn sitting at the edge of a forest — protected and comfortable, while looking out at a vast expanse in front of them. This image stuck with me and has influenced my design philosophy. It was just a coincidence that fawn ended up being the name of my company, but looking back I’m sure that image stayed in my subconscious somewhere.

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What kind of art do you like?

I like many different styles and have always been drawn to realism through my studies in art history. I spent a semester living in Italy studying art history and Roman architecture so the Italian aesthetic has become part of my genes. Primarily I love rich color, movement and a story behind a piece of art. Generally I tend to specify more modern work in my interiors, but really I buy art based on what speaks to me. My personal collection has modern New Mexican folk art paintings and photography.

What’s your best piece of advice when it comes to decorating a home with art?

Go with your gut. If you love a piece then it’s likely you’ll love it for a long time.

Give us a fun fact about yourself

I can never stop designing. I’ve done wedding coordination, furniture design, photography and have recently gone into personal styling. I think it’s in my blood, both of my grandfathers designed homes for themselves and my father was a photographer for 25 years.

Stay tuned for the next interview! 

A Special Room Makeover with a UGallery Piece

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We love seeing how artworks can transform a space — especially when it’s a UGallery piece! 

Bri Emery of designlovefest recently decided to give her bedroom a makeover. To give the room a fresh look, she asked Victoria Smith of sfgirlbybay for help (she’s guest curated for us before!). Together, Bri and Victoria created a gorgeous bedroom design that includes a work by Gregory Hochmuth called The Sky Above. 

We love the way Victoria and Bri use the image to really tie the room together. The pops of pink and grey color really help certain tones in the photograph stand out, too. 

Bri writes: 

the photo above the bed is by an artist named  gregor hochmuth and is available through ugallery here. it’s the danish pavilion at shanghai’s world expo 2010. i also realllllly love this print from their shop! it sort of reminds me of a wes anderson vibe.

Check out her full blog post here and an entry from sfgirlbybay. Special thanks to Victoria and Bri. What a great project! 

All photos courtesy of designlovefest, taken by Laure Joliet

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What We Saw at Silicon Valley Contemporary

This weekend, we stopped by Silicon Valley Contemporary, the first contemporary art fair to take place in Silicon Valley. The fair was held at the San Jose McEnery Convention Center from April 10 — 13. As the website explains: 

The fair’s mission is to create the “next generation art fair” by establishing a bridge between the worlds of art + tech by showcasing cutting edge new media and moving image works and installations.

We walked around the booths and also attended a panel discussion called “How to Effectively Build a Corporate Collection.” The panelists included gallery and architecture experts as well as Five Senses Art Consultancy founder Alexandra Ray and Saatchi Art Chief Curator and Director Rebecca Wilson. The talk highlighted some key points about art collecting today, including the idea that physical galleries and online ones can coexist.

We saw some interesting pieces as well. Check out photos from the fair below! 

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Sunday’s attendees

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Before Warhol by Devorah Sperber

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Mirus Gallery booth 


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Paintings made with drones by KATSU 

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Horizon by Thomson and Craighead 

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detail, Proximity Cinema Performance Documentation at The Black Forest, Germany by Tiffany Trenda

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Addressability by Jeff Guess

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Depth Charge by Gary Hill

New Guest Curator: Curbly

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Capree Kimball is the Deputy Editor and Social Media Manager for Curbly, a design community for people who love where they live and want to bring out the best in their home. With a deep love of Victorian-era “fancy lads,” 19th Century anatomy drawings and tin robots, she is bringing her unique and bold aesthetic to her very own UGallery collection.

We love the group of pieces that she put together! Check out some her favorites below and see the full collection here.

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DL Watson, Pink Martini, 2014

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Lucille Pack, Miss Universe 1953, 2009

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Susan K Boyle, Rhythmic 3, 2013

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Ina Shtukar, Peonies in a Vase, 2014 

Eye on Interior Design: Lauren Flax

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Do you love this work space design as much as we do? This is the work of interior designer Lauren Flax of Flax-Design, the newest designer featured in our Eye on Interior Design Series.

Lauren also runs the blog Splendid Objects, a website dedicated to showcasing beautiful design, art and spaces. The blog caught our eye for its gorgeous examples of how to use art to design a great room. 

We asked Lauren about her passion for design, advice for decorating with art and more. 

Tell us a little bit about what you do.

I’m an interior designer with a residential and hospitality focus. My day-to-day schedule involves a lot of running around. I’m either sourcing for projects, managing renovations or meeting with clients. I’m very rarely at my desk!

When did you first get interested in interior design?

I have always been interested in design – for as long as I can remember. When I was 5 years old my parents hired a decorator and I nixed all of his ideas. I realized that this was my calling right then and there. I had strong opinions on how things should function and look.

I noticed you also run a blog portion of Splendid Objects. What has been your favorite post so far?

I began running Splendid Objects while I was in design school to build up my taste and aesthetic and it became a great reference source for my design business. I’ve cataloged so many great ideas over the years that have been so helpful in current projects. I don’t think there is a single post that I love the most. I’m inspired by a variety of different design related topics, I can’t pinpoint just one.

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What kind of art do you like?

My art taste these days is modern and abstract. I love bold brushstokes, color and high contrast. I love discovering emerging young artists, everyone needs someone to back their work in the beginning.  

What’s your best piece of advice when it comes to decorating a home with art?

The best advice I ever received (which I always refer back to when it comes to design) is that the art should dictate the room’s design and not the other way around. Ideally, you start with a painting or a photograph and you draw your colors, texture and pattern from the painting so that the room’s design is cohesive and the painting blends into the design seamlessly.

Give us a fun fact about yourself. 

If I weren’t designing for a living I think I’d be an equestrian. I love horses as much as design! 

You can follow Lauren on InstagramTwitter and Facebook