Three special bookstores.

Deep Vellum (and Wes Anderson) in East Dallas

A couple of weeks ago I was in Dallas shuttling around the city, and general metro region, to locate filming locations for Bottle Rocket. One mid-day exploration took me to Deep Ellum, as I searched for the Texas Ice House, or for those Wes Anderson fans out there, the location of former Hinckley Cold Storage.

As I drove up Main Street, a bookstore caught my eye as I looked to the right while crossing over South Walton Street.  I circled around the block to check it out.

 

It was my kind of bookstore.  One with obscure and esoteric (but still Amazonable) titles such as Ramblings of a Wannabe Painter by Paul Gauguin, Junkspace with Running Room by Rem Koolhaas and Hal Foster, and A Handbook for the Perfect Adventurer by Pierre Mac Orlan.  Oh, and they have good espresso.

Farewell in East Austin and Karver in Montenegro

The space reminded me of another one in Texas – Farewell Books (unfortunately now closed), and one in Podgorica, Montenegro – Karver. The owners of Farewell wrote this as they closed their brick and mortar shop earlier this year:

We believe there is something invaluable that happens when you connect with a book, a painting, a film, a piece of music or another artist that you had not previously known existed.  When we have a relationship in the real world to each other and to the arts in this way it works to transform us as individuals and to bring us together as a community.

Books and art can help us look at our world differently, and these experiences can be the inspiration for a subsequent creative endeavor.  Veronica Ortuño, owner of Austin-based Las Cruxes, a concept store and gallery that focuses on exploration and experimentation, describes her greatest hope for those who interact in her gallery through the lens of resulting experiences.

WHEN SOMEONE ENTERS THE SPACE AND FINDS INSPIRATION IN A SCULPTURE, THE INTERIOR DESIGN, THE COLORFUL SELECTION, OR IN THE MUSIC WE CARRY IN-STORE OR HOST ON OUR RADIO PROGRAM AND ACTUALLY HAVE AN EXPERIENCE…THAT’S THE MOST GRATIFYING COMPLIMENT FOR ME.

The same way that Flat Track Coffee is what led me initially through the backdoor of the 913 Collective to discover Farewell Books and Las Cruxes, Karver led me to the former capital of Montenegro, Cetinje, and an impromptu meeting with artist Natalija Vujosevic.

Making Time for Inspired Experiences

I love the ideas presented above by Veronica, that inspired experiences is what we should all be chasing and seeking in this life.  So when artists like Ugo Rondinone stack neon rocks in the middle of the desert drive between Las Vegas and LA, he’s encouraging / challenging passersby to stop, breath, admire, and experience . . . and memorialize a moment of their time.

 

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