Collaboration and Synergy: Gray Haus Studios and Art Source
When artists collaborate and all goes well, synergy brings powerful results.
And that process can also occur when two arts consultants with complementary work styles do the same.
Eileen Roth and Christy Gray bring decades of art consulting experience to their work together, and they are finishing up two noteworthy projects, each of significant size, in Northeast Ohio.
One, at Southwest General Health Center in Middleburg Heights, opened within the last year; the other–the new Cuyahoga County Headquarters in downtown Cleveland–opened in July.
These are among the larger projects Gray and Roth have worked on together, and so for months, the Art Source studio space in Beachwood abounded with pieces of art that ate up wall and floor space.
Gray and Roth found the artwork that fit their vision in the way most effective art consultants do: through their artist networks, and through galleries–including Bonfoey, William Busta Gallery, 78th Street Studios and Harris-Stanton. “It was very important to us to support the commerce of art in Cuyahoga county,” Roth says.
Eileen Roth is the owner of Art Source, in Beachwood. Art Source was one of the first firms, that 30 years ago, identified the need for a service to help corporations acquire artwork.
Christy Gray is the owner of Gray Haus Studios in Bay Village, and has 20 years of project management and planning experience; she too works with business clients to create a mix of artwork that enhances a firm’s space and communicates the vision of the business. The two women have worked together, though, for some 20 years.
The Southwest project meant acquiring art for a new building that houses the emergency room, intensive care unit, and three floors of patient rooms. The hospital was seeking to convey a vision of calm and healing through the creations that would hang in its corridors. “Our client wanted nature-based imagery and all local artists,” explains Gray. “The selections were all run through that filter – with a more representational quality to the art, versus an abstract quality.”
A few of the artists whose work is featured in the Southwest General Health Center tower are Erica Weiss, David Jansheski, Fred Graff and Mary Deutschman.
The vision was different for the new Cuyahoga County Administration building located at East 9th Street and Prospect, says Roth.
“For the county, we only used artists from the region, with an emphasis not just on diversity, but on conveying the vitality and culture of Northeast Ohio. Art in these settings has a communication objective, and we really worked to achieve that.” Among the artists featured are Lawrence Channing, John Pearson, Michael Loderstedt and Jessica Maloney.
Additionally Roth and Gray selected and sourced artwork through the Cuyahoga County Board of Developmental Disabilities. The artworks selected were seamlessly incorporated into the overall vision. “We treated them as we did any artist,” Gray says. “They are recognized for their abilities, not sidelined for their disabilities.”
And, as Roth adds of her and Gray’s work, “We are both artists, and these were the compositions on which Christy and I collaborated.”