Art and Soul

See original works of art at Artemizia Gallery | By Andrew Schaeffer

There’s a clichéd phrase that often gets repeated in galleries by people who are only viewing works skin deep. “I may not know much about art, but I know what I like.” It’s perfectly fine for people who just want to see something aesthetically pleasing, but great works of art have deeper meanings that go beyond the canvas. Genuine artists are able to tell a story and convey emotions within their works. Influential pieces of art will make viewers think deeper and ask themselves important questions. So where’s the gallery for the true art lovers among us?

That’s when a trip to Artemizia Gallery in Bisbee is warranted. Owner Sloane Bouchever is an artist himself, but this gallery isn’t to show off his own work—this gallery showcases the art he loves. He’s a man who knows a great deal about art and knows exactly what he likes. The pieces Bouchever has accrued and displays in his gallery are as influential as they are vibrant. Bisbee’s newest gallery is throwing out the notion that only locally made kitschy art is available in town.

Located right on Main Street in the heart of Old Bisbee, it’s hard to miss Artemizia Gallery with the life-size mannequin of Andy Warhol in the front window and the strikingly vivid art displayed above the awning. Inside, urban and pop art—Artemizia’s specialty—adorn the walls of the small and narrow gallery space. Art by internationally known and well-established artists, as well as up-and-coming artists Bouchever admires, stand out with their bold and bright styles, competing with one another for the viewers’ attention. You’ll see museum-quality original pieces by Andy Warhol, Jeff Koons, and Jean-Michel Basquiat alongside thought-provoking works by rising stars including Andrea Eisenberger, Campbell La Pun, and Arizona-native Chance Lovestrong. Some works are even signed.

A current favorite of Bouchever are The Connor Brothers. The pseudonym for a pair of British artists, the duo is known for playing hoaxes with their art to get the public asking questions. In 2014, The Connor Brothers created a museum that blended fiction and non-fiction together to make it impossible for viewers to understand which exhibits were real and which were not. Bouchever believes their truth versus fiction approach is particularly relevant within our current climate of fake news, post-truth, and social media obsession.

Seeing this amazing art by these insightful artists is paramount to understanding our world. Even if you don’t plan on purchasing a piece, walking through the space and admiring the art is an experience in and of itself. Bouchever’s passion is contagious as he talks about each work, so don’t be afraid to ask questions as you look along.

Artemizia Gallery may be filled to capacity with this colorful and loud collection of pop art now, but in summer 2020 the gallery will move into a space that’s five times the size. Expect to see even more important pieces by Bouchever’s personal favorite artists.

Artemizia Gallery

51 Main St., Bisbee