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New gallery tucked right under your feet

MILLERTON — It’s certainly one of the more unusual business fronts in the village. The Hanback Gallery is the newest business in Millerton, having opened during the middle of August in the corner shop on Main and South Center streets, directly below the Parlour clothing boutique.

Owner Lois Lenehan’s gallery, which specializes in contemporary American art, was located in Lenox, Mass., for the last three years. She had worked in the gallery, which was run by a different owner and titled differently, prior to that. The gallery’s name comes from her husband, Burt Hanback, who has a fairly artistic family and has also helped repaint the store with warmer colors.

There are two reasons for the move to Millerton, Lenehan explained. The first is that her lease was up in Lenox. The second was her marriage to Hanback, a Pine Plains man. She had moved there three  years ago, and had been commuting to Lenox since. But it was the irresistible pull of the village that finally determined the new location of the gallery.

“My actions determined my decisions. When I first moved to Pine Plains, I kept coming to Millerton. I’d go to the movies, Harney’s, Gilmor Glass, Manna Dew,” she said. “Millerton just seemed pretty lively, and very friendly.”

The gallery is now all on one floor, and Lenehan was quick to point out the copious amounts of sunshine coming through the windows of her gallery, saying it coordinates well with her choice of artists and their work.

“I’m always looking for color,” she said. “A lot of galleries are more black and white, but for me it’s color. I also like to have a variety of mediums.”

There are oils, watercolors, encaustics, traditional photography (no digital alterations), mixed media, ceramics, furniture and jewelry to choose from. Many of the artists are local, and the majority are from the New England area.

“I couldn’t ask for more [from my artists],” she said. “They’re very talented and diverse.”

Lenehan explained that contrary to other gallery practices, she likes to stay with artists. If a particular piece isn’t selling, she will work with the artists, many of whom also do commissions, to find the right piece.

The Hanback Gallery is located at 64 South Center St., but can most easily be found by heading to the corner of Main Street and South Center streets, directly below Parlour. Gallery hours are Thursday through Saturday from noon to 6 p.m. The gallery can be reached at 518-789-0202; Lenehan can be contacted directly at 413-446-9235.

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