Global Art

02 Jun 2023

Art Highlands Gallery offers diverse works sure to please art enthusiasts




Beata Gola and Dr. Steve Hinkey spent a year traveling 42,000 miles in a camper visiting 1,000 art galleries and museums before ultimately picking the plateau as their place to settle. The couple’s journey—and trailer full of art collected along the way—served as inspiration for their new gallery.

Art Highlands Gallery, formerly Invocative Fine Art, opened in November at 521 N. 4th St. in Highlands and will have a grand opening and ribbon-cutting ceremony with the Highlands Chamber of Commerce on June 16 from 10 a.m. to noon. The gallery is currently showcasing 20 artists and adding new artists weekly.

“Art is about transformation—all kinds,” Hinkey said. “It can awaken us, enliven us, endear us, support us, challenge us and enrich us. We specialize in fresh, inspirational, deeply moving art.”

“Take Harry Moody’s art, for example,” Gola said. “One of the greatest living abstract painters, easy to walk by, stunning once it grabs you. A man commented, ‘I learned more about abstract art—who, what, why and how to experience it—in 15 minutes with you than I had in 40 years collecting art. I went from I don’t get it to full-on appreciation.’ Our creators are revolutionary, produce really fun stuff and make you glad you collect art.”

Florencia Clement de Grandprey stands in front of a carpet—Navajo, Persian, etc.—until a face appears, then takes five weeks revealing it with paint over the rug design. People love her work, Gola said.

Michael Hayden, an encaustic artist, is at Art Highlands June 1-4. “You simply must come get the full experience,” Gola said. “He’s delightful, and you’ll become forever alert to encaustic wax technique.”

Always on the hunt for new artists, Art Highlands welcomes solicitation. There is modern, contemporary, representational, still life, landscape, plein air, sculpture and collage.

“You can become a new fan of art or add stunning work to your existing collection,” Gola said. “There is such an abundance of art. Here, it’s a unity of diversity.”

In addition, Hinkey draws live at the gallery, holds special events and teaches courses, while pros such as Barbara Jamison, Mark Bettis and Ann DerGara come to explain their process and take you deeper into their art—and all art.

Summer schedules are posted in local calendars and on“We’re here to make a difference, to inspire, to have just the right thing for you to take home,” Hinkey said. “Constantly changing, the curation is exciting. You’ll get new ideas for hanging, lighting and enhancing your collection.”

Other featured artists at Art Highlands include Clara Berta, Luis Sanchez, Suzan Obermeyer, Yari Ostovany, Fred Free, Allan Bealy, Sunny Redmond, Kim DerGarabedian, Kyle Van Lusk, Charles Sherman and Colette Fairman. “Our artists really match our vision,” said Hinkey, who also displays his own digital art, printed on multiple mediums and TVs in the gallery.

Hinkey and Gola work together to carry out their vision for the gallery and feed off each other’s abilities in transforming the space. “We picked colors no one thought we should pick,” Gola said. “We did floors no one thought we should do. We picked a building people were iffy about and turned it into a gem.”

As for the gallery’s name change, Hinkey said he likes the word “invocative” because it suggests art that arises from a spiritual response rather than commercial intent, but they ultimately decided to change to Art Highlands for pure simplicity. “I am a fan of things that just roll off the tongue,” Hinkey said. “I don’t want the name of the business to confuse even one person. Art Highlands is nice and clean.”

The gallery also offers classes and public events and arranges private art showings. “We’ve gotten really great responses from architects, builders, interior designers and realtors,” Hinkey said. “We just love that because we enjoy assisting with art placement, lighting and anything that helps bring out what each piece of art is about, in its place. Let us help you stage a shoot and gain access to some of the world’s great treasures.”

The growth of the plateau should position Art Highlands for lots of opportunities to get its art into new places, Gola said. “It’s a great time for our area,” she said. “We’re going to do everything we can to have beautiful art that people can enjoy. We’d like to see art incorporated more into the whole scene.”

For information regarding upcoming events, go to Artist Meet & Greets: June 1-4, Michael Hayden; June 23, Mark Bettis; July 13 Barbara Jamison. Healing Theater with Dr. Hinkey, Spiritual Access for Creatives Series and Health and Wellness Series held throughout June and July.

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