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Gallery owner reminisces on time in Paseo

Rachael Cervenka Modified: June 12, 2013 at 12:40 pm •  Published: June 6, 2013
The storefront of Paseo Pottery, a gallery/studio that has been in the Paseo Arts District for 23 years. Photo by Rachael Cervenka.
The storefront of Paseo Pottery, a gallery/studio that has been in the Paseo Arts District for 23 years. Photo by Rachael Cervenka.

The hot pink exterior of the stucco structure that sits at the edge of Paseo Drive reflects the personality of the art lover who has resided there for 23 years.

Once upon a time, this brightly colored building was a Laundromat. Collin Rosebrook, a local artist, transformed it into a pottery paradise.

Rosebrook purchased the space in 1990; and after months of renovation opened Paseo Pottery in what he thought was the city’s “artsy” area; the Paseo.

Having grown up in Oklahoma City, Rosebrook said he was accustomed to the curved two-block street adorned with Spanish revival architecture and hippies.

“I remember driving down the Paseo, just to look at the people,” he said. “Some of those people are still around and they are dressed the same…bell-bottoms and all that.”

“It’s kind of interesting that I am sort of one of those folks now.”

After studying music at Oklahoma State University, Rosebrook began dabbling in the visual arts. He discovered his passion for clay and sculpture, and the rest is history, he said.

Rosebrook has seen the Paseo come to life. The street is now home to 17 galleries and more than 60 artists, all within walking distance, according to the Paseo Arts District’s website. Fifteen artists work and display their wares at Paseo Pottery gallery.

“It’s night and day,” he said. “You know how some people think of Santa Fe as sort of the mecca of the arts…well that’s what this place is now.”

Rosebrook’s favorite aspect of working in the Paseo, other than creating his artwork, is that he feels comfortable running across the street to borrow tools or anything else from fellow artists.

Paseo Pottery has a large studio in the back, complete with pottery wheels, kilns and clay galore. The studio hosts several weekly classes for artists of all levels.

Rosebrook said he spends nearly 70 hours in the studio/gallery each week.

When visitors enter Paseo Pottery, they will likely be greeted by Rosebrook, dressed casually and quite possibly sporting a Paseo T-shirt. With harmonica music playing in the background, artists spinning clay and voices chattering from all directions, it makes for a vibrant environment.

“I’m here more than I am at home,” he said. “I sleep at the home.”

Rosebrook said he doesn’t envision Paseo Pottery anyplace else.

“We get a lot of outside people,” he said. “If they are here, they make a point to come to the Paseo.”

Visit Paseo Pottery on Facebook.