These days most of the Wilkins Design Duo weekends are filled with clouds of sawdust and cups of coffee as we create new pieces and chat with clients about their ideas for custom pieces.
Last weekend however we took a different road to inspiration as we joined our good friends Lisa and Frank on a road trip to visit Storm King Art Center in the Hudson Valley.
This particular road trip had been in the works for some time but the difficulties of finding the time in 4 busy schedules meant that we had to bypass the warm summer months and look to mid-October for our trip. Our busy schedules proved to be a blessing since the sun was shining and the fall colours were absolutely radiant.
Frank did the planning and found us a quirky contemporary motel in a tiny town called Roxbury New York.The Roxbury Motel was a welcoming, comfortable, and crazy place to call home away from home. Each room is decorated in its own think-outside-the-box unique style, and the outside terrace is equipped with a gas fire and brightly coloured patio furniture so that even on a cool fall morning we were able to sit outside to drink a hot coffee while soaking in the beauty of the area.
Directly next door to the Roxbury Motel was The Public Restaurant and Lounge. We wandered into the restaurant early in the evening and we were immediately charmed by the staff and a small group of locals who were sitting by the bar chatting. One of the locals (Phil) was soon filling us in on all the cool things that were happening around the tiny town that weekend. Frank had found us the perfect get-away location for a group of contemporary art lovers!
A couple of glasses of wine later and we found ourselves across the street enjoying The Orphic Gallery’s display of Allen Tannenbaum’s photographs from the 70’s New York music scene and Greg Frederick’s “Vinyl Pop” exhibit of portraits made from broken 45’s. But there was more (and we had only just arrived)!
As the evening continued we were treated to plenty of good conversation and a fun guided tour of the 8 Track Museum right upstairs from the gallery.
What a great introduction to Roxbury.
Saturday morning saw us up with the birds and off to our primary destination; the Storm King Art Center in the Hudson Valley. It was a place that Michael had read about and really wanted to experience. Being a metal working kind of guy the giant steel sculptures of Storm King are right up his alley. The sculptures dotted around this 500 acre site were nothing short of awe inspiring. Huge works of steel, wood, rock, concrete, and earth, majestically towered above us. Thank you Ralph E. Ogden and H. Peter Stern for having the vision to begin the creation of such an amazing space, and to all of the staff who mould the grounds into a perfect frame for each sculpture. Storm King should be part of any art lover’s bucket list!
We left Storm King inspired and delighted but happy.
When we returned to Roxbury the town was hoppin’! The Orphic Gallery was bustling with people who had attended a talk by Boy About Town author Tony Fletcher and were now being treated conversation and story swapping with both Fletcher and the photographer Allen Tannenbaum. We delightedly joined in the chatter and purchased a few very cool items to hang in our living room when we got home.
By the time we made it to The Public for a late dinner the restaurant was packed and the crowd was lively. The vibe was far more city than small town. I couldn’t believe that such a tiny place could be so full of action. What we had anticipated to be a quiet dinner before retiring early to bed, soon turned into chocolate martinis with new friends and strolling back to our rooms at closing time.
Now that we’re home Michael is inspired to build more large scale sculptures. I suspect I will have a garden full of towering steel structures come spring. I can hardly wait!!