I starred at the intimidating blank canvas with reservation. Many years had past, life happened and through it all my desire to paint faded and was nearly forgotten. I stood like a warrior suited for battle - sixty years old, legally blind with legs weakened from Multiple Sclerosis - my paintbrush loaded with thick gesso, was my artillery. With a warrior’s fight to win, I struck with intent, my arms moving swiftly back and forth with each stroke. Exhilaration spilled over me, warming rawness, exposing what felt natural to me. I completed that painting, and with each painting that followed, a sense of accomplishment and pride replaced what was once a feeling of boredom and uselessness. An awakening was occurring in my soul. A passion that became addicting and exhilarating.
Three years later and dozens of paintings completed, my next chapter was about to unfold. With my nose pressed against a dirty store front window of a vacant building off Main street, I saw a number to call. I knew that very second what I was meant to do. It was shortly after that day, Annex 25 was born. Feeling energized, I saw a space for celebration, new beginnings for artists, as well as the seasoned artists, inspiring the most avid collector - a space to embrace individuality, creative expression and soul awakening experiences that engage all the senses.
I look forward to meeting you soon. ~Julie Kleven (Owner, Annex 25)