By Nancy Koucky
Simply walking into the Bokeelia Art Gallery is an enchanting experience. The natural light and space draw the viewer into a captivating collection of artwork.
In 2019, Ed and Carol Garske purchased Crossed Palms Gallery (established in 1989) in Bokeelia, at the northern tip of Pine Island, overlooking Charlotte Harbor. After purchasing the property, Ed and Carol spent more than a year remodeling and expanding the building, updating the property, collecting a remarkable collection of displays, and choosing an enticing selection of artwork culminating is a stunning environment for an art and designer craft gallery.
The gallery represents more than 50 artists, of which 25 or more are Florida artists. They represent a variety of mediums including paintings, jewelry, glass, pottery, clothing and wood. Some of the artists had been shown at Crossed Palms, but Carol has added her signature to the collection by adding many talented artists.
Carol’s sense of display is unique for a gallery setting. She has a wide ensemble of tables, mirrors, cabinets, chandeliers, pedestals and shelves that she has acquired from antique and consignment shops from Wisconsin to Florida. Artwork, expertly displayed on these pieces, gives the shopper a sense of what the work will look like in a home setting
The Garskes have been longtime Southwest Florida residents but have also resided in Illinois and Michigan. Drawing from all these locations, they have been adding art to their personal collection for more than 30 years. Several artists in their personal collection have been brought into the gallery introducing Southwest Florida to works that have not previously been shown.
A visit to the gallery is a relaxing, yet invigorating experience that everyone should experience. Give yourself the gift of a trip to Bokeelia and a long stop at the Bokeelia Art Gallery.
The gallery is open seasonally from October to April. Hours are Tuesday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. The gallery is located at 8315 Main St. in Bokeelia. For more info, call 239-738-5280 or visit the gallery online at www.BokeeliaArtGallery.com to get a glimpse of all that the gallery has to offer. While on the site, sign up for the newsletter to received news and info about new artists, events or openings. You can also follow them through Facebook and Instagram.