Friday, September 20, 2013

Why Handmade: Cristina Hurley Gallery

by Lynn Mohney of Prunella’s Workshop

In the heart of Canton, Massachusetts there is an unassuming storefront called the Cristina Hurley Gallery. If you are not careful, you might drive or walk right by, but if you dare to enter you will find absolute magic.

photo by Cristina Hurley

That was what I experienced this last past weekend, when I had the joy of having a trunk show in Cristina’s shop. Potential customers would enter, and begin perusing the various handmade merchandise, created by artists and craftspeople in Massachusetts. They were always quiet at first, but by the time they made their purchase they were part of the family. It seemed near impossible to not get roped in to the infectious laughter permeating through the room. Whether the important topic of conversation was the Muppets or Pandora’s music selection, it seemed customers had something to add and felt comfortable joining in on the fun.

Lynn Mohney getting a little silly at the Cristina Hurley Gallery; photo by Cristina Hurley

Cristina Hurley Gallery may be the dream of one woman, the feeling of family and community was. Cristina’s mother and sister stopped in frequently, and with them a feeling of warmth and happiness. Cristina’s employee is the mother of a mutual friend and member of Boston Handmade. Members of Boston Handmade created the majority of the work showcased in Cristina’s shop.

photo by Cristina Hurley

Cristina’s jeweler’s bench is located right in the store, in the back corner, where anyone could walk in off the street and actually watch her own work come to life. This, of course, was a natural place for me to gravitate, being a metal smith myself. Cristina immediately apologizes that her work area is messy, but it was anything but chaos. Everything had its reason for being right where it was, and what was more fascinating, their reasons for being where they were was similar to my own organization!

Cristina Hurley's bench - photo by Cristina Hurley

If you are in Canton, you need to stop by. You will be greeted by people with laughter and fun in their hearts. Come see the exceptional art and craftsmanship in Cristina’s jewelry, or view the other creations her shop has to offer, from dog collars to photography to handbags. Cristina is waiting for you!

Cristina Hurley Gallery is located at 554 Washington Street, Canton, MA 02021

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