This is a tribute to the art gallery where my art was first introduced to the high desert community. True World Gallery in downtown Joshua Tree will (sadly!) be closing its doors this weekend. This gallery is not a large gallery with high ceilings and pretension (thankfully), but it is a gallery that offered art both from local artists as well as artists from outside our community. There was always something new hanging on the walls at True World. George and Bonnie Kopp, the proprietors of the gallery, managed to show artists from 6 states, not including California. The art ranged from local desert landscapes to abstract to outsider art - even art cars. Three art car artists had shows at True World Gallery, and at one point, True World even managed to get some art cars to come to Joshua Tree.
|My first solo exhibition in Joshua Tree, True World Gallery, February 2009.|
When True World Gallery first opened four years ago, they were the first tenant in the Starlite (a small cluster of buildings with a beautiful courtyard in the middle. There is now a yoga studio, pizza place and Mt. Fuji General Store in the Starlite.) They were also the first retail venue on the North side of Highway 62 in downtown Joshua Tree. George and Bonnie Kopp are active in the business and art community of Joshua Tree. Supporters of the MBCAC (Morongo Basin Cultural Arts Council) and participants in the annual Hwy. 62 Art Tours, they have been a boon to the art and artists of this area. George Kopp is currently the president of the Joshua Tree Chamber of Commerce.
|From left, Barnett English, George Kopp and Bonnie Kopp|
While Bonnie Kopp is the smiling face one usually would see when walking into the gallery, George has been behind the scenes working as the website designer, postcard designer, and all-around graphics wizard for the gallery. The gallery would not be what it is without both Kopps working together to make this gallery a success. The last day the True World Gallery will be open will be this Sunday. Please do take a moment to stop in and thank True World for their contribution to our desert community. This gallery has given many artists a place to show and sell art, it has been a place to find unique gifts, and it has been a place for people to gather during openings and gallery crawls. The role of this gallery in Joshua Tree has been an important one. Gallery hours this weekend are: Friday and Saturday from 11 to 4 and Sunday from 11 to 3.
When I asked what she will miss about True World, Bonnie responded by saying she will miss being in the public and meeting so many wonderful people. It is because of the gallery that Bonnie knows so many people and artists in Joshua Tree. No one knows what is next for the Kopps, once the gallery is closed, but the list of adventures and things to learn has them both excited about the future. I know I am speaking for many of us when I say THANK YOU TRUE WORLD!!!!! We love you, George and Bonnie!!