In 1965, amid an economic depression, it might have seemed sheer folly to open an art gallery in a defunct silver-mining town. (Treasure Mountains—precursor to Park City Mountain Resort—had opened just two years prior.) But for Darrell and Gerri Meyer, it was the best way to showcase the Intermountain West’s treasure trove of local artists. “My parents started with sketches, pottery, and water colors,” says Susan Meyer, the Meyers’ daughter and Meyer Gallery curator. “The art was more traditional then, often featuring western wildlife and landscapes.”
So, throwing caution to the wind, the Meyers opened the Hanging Room Gallery in Old Town. A year later they moved down the street and renamed their fledgling art space after themselves. In the half century since then, Meyer Gallery (305 Main St, 435.649.8160, meyergallery.com) has represented some of the most renowned artists in the region—from Brian Kershisnik and Santiago Michalek to Jim Rennert and Fatima Ronquillo—and is known now for its modern flair. “Not all galleries in Park City carry artists from this region,” notes Meyer. “We resource in Utah primarily and then work out to surrounding states.”
Although its passion for local artists has never waned, Park City taste has evolved, and the gallery has changed with it. “Park City has grown into a world-class destination, so our clients’ expectations are much higher—not only for the quality of work but also for the service,” says Meyer. “Typically, the person walking in our door has been exposed to a lot of art and is very savvy.” Meyer educates her small staff about the individual artists and the art market as a whole, ensuring they know where Meyer Gallery fits in the big picture.
It all adds up to an environment that facilitates transformative experiences. “It’s not uncommon for someone to wander into the gallery and be moved to tears by something,” says Meyer. “It’s so inspiring to see young artists flourishing by doing what they do best. We’re helping both local artists and the economy, and that means a lot to me.”
To celebrate its 50th anniversary, the Meyer Gallery is hosting two group shows to coincide with the June and December 2015 Gallery Strolls. For details, call 435.649.8160 or visit meyergallery.com or parkcitygalleryassociation.com.