William and Joanne Bell opened their Bell Gallery & Garden today
and it’s everything we had expected it would be.
The gallery displays work by top local artists as well as work by William and Joanne themselves.
There was so much to admire and the quality was so uniformly high that
it was hard to pick out a display that stood out from the rest, but the
large framed photographs by William Bell were truly exceptional.
As you can see from the image above, the photos are
so realistic that it is like standing in front of a window. William
has developed a revolutionary mounting technique for his large format
photos that does away for the need for glass to protect the photograph!
As a result, the clarity and intensity of the framed photograph is
undiminished from the original image.
After seeing one of these photographs, you will never want to go back to the old method of framing again.
The gallery is spacious and occupies the entire first floor of the
building. There is a framing shop on the premises and a garden at the
rear of the gallery. You will find it easy to lose an hour browsing
through the imaginatively designed displays.
Everywhere you look, you will see evidence of the care with which the
Bells created this gallery. For example, in the renovation of this
historic building, they discovered that the walls were constructed of
8-inch-wide stacked hardwood boards!
As you can see in this photo, the boards were simply stacked one on top of the other with each row
offset from the next to provide a gripping surface for the original
plaster. The boards were nailed down and were overlapped on the corners like
log cabin construction. You can see the inside view of one wall and a
detail view of one of the corners which was exposed during renovations.
An original wall section has been varnished and left exposed in the
rear of the gallery. For those of you who are architectural history
buffs, it makes for fascinating viewing.
While I was shooting pictures and interviewing the Bells, Gretchen fell
in love with some of Joanne’s unique hanging glass. As a result, we now
have some of these pieces hanging in our picture windows. Very nice!
Drop in and visit the Bells if you are in Floyd. The Bell Gallery & Garden is at 112
N. Locust Street in Floyd, VA, and is located right next to Oddfellas Cantina, where
you can retire to celebrate your purchases.
Tell them you saw their gallery on the Internet.
Tag: Floyd, VA