Art of Life is a gallery and gift shop located behind the Coos Art Museum in the Ford Building at 245 S 2nd street in Coos Bay. We specialize in selling fine art and handmade creations from local and Pacific Northwest artists. The concept for a boutique style shop that sells local handmade pieces was the idea of the shop’s owner Molly Ford who opened the new business on June 30th, 2015.
When a visitor walks into Art of Life, the first thing they notice is the beautiful locally sourced myrtlewood flooring, and then the ceiling beams and sales counter made of Douglas fir. “People comment on how nice the shop smells,” says Ford. “I think it is because the wood is still so new.” Molly’s husband David is the owner of The Ford Building which he purchased in 2012. David had been looking for a location where he could build a state of the art recording studio. David has been playing electric guitar for most of his life. He found an old building in a central location that was large enough to accommodate much more and renovations began. In addition to Art of Life, The Ford Building is also the home of 7 Devils Brewing, and Sol Coast Consulting and Design. Green features include solar power, a rain garden, and locally sourced talent and materials chosen during the renovation process. The recording studio is currently being built above the brewery and will be the future home of Inner Sanctum studios.
Stained glass hangings adorn the windows and stained glass houses and night lights are aglow inside at Art of Life. All stained glass pieces are made by Alta Pacific in Bandon. Original paintings, photography, and mosaics from Coos County artists cover the walls of Art of Life. Some featured artists include David Black, David Castleberry, Susan Chambers, Brian Coleman, Linda Deardorff, Pam Dennis, James Emard, Linda Herd, Diane Irvin, Clyde Kirkpatrick, Christine Landucci, Gary Manos, Dutch Mostert, Paula Reis, Christy Sanders, Sam Schwarz, Susan Scott, and Kimberly Wurster.
Some of the many gift items you will find available include Boring Goats soap products from Boring Oregon, pewter wall hooks from Crosby and Taylor in Eugene, charm bracelets and earrings from Three Cats Graphics in Coos Bay, wood vessels from Out of The Woods in Reedsport, wood jewelry from Mossy Wool Roots in Mapleton, and mixed metal jewelry from Northwest Goods in Corvallis.
Art of Life also sells clothing. In keeping with the locally made theme of this unique shop all clothing lines are made in the USA. Art of Life carries two women’s clothing lines: Blue Canoe made in San Francisco of organic cotton and bamboo, Sympatico made in Jacksonville, Oregon of hemp and tencel, and knitwear from Loanne Lark in Coos Bay. They also have JP Mucklestone underwear for men, designed by a Coos Bay resident and manufactured in Portland. “Our children’s clothing lines truly exemplify the term wearable art,” says Molly, “They include Twirly Girl dresses, Mouthman T’s, Shirts That Go, and Oh Little Rabbit Onesies for infants.”
Art of Life offers free gift wrapping for all purchases and has hand-dyed gift wrapping paper and greeting cards from local artists for sale. We are always looking for unique, locally made works of art. “So come in and see us, whether you are an art lover or an artist, we’d love you meet you.”