DIGITAL EDITION: World-Class Art At Centaur Art Galleries

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ART SMART

Serious art lovers and collectors, not only from all over the US, but from around the world have long known of Centaur Art Galleries as the place to go for the finest selection of artworks by artists all the way from the 16th Century to today’s modern masters – from Rembrandt to Renoir, from Pablo Picasso to Salvador Dali, Alexander Calder, Marc Chagall, Joan Miro, and Norman Rockwell, as well as contemporary artists such as LeRoy Neiman and Steve Kaufman, and hundreds more.

Centaur Art Galleries and its President/CEO Richard C. Perry, have earned a reputation of integrity and distinction. Perry opened Centaur Sculpture Galleries and its sister company, Minotaur Fine Art Galleries, in Las Vegas more than two decades ago. With more than 30 years experience in the art business, Perry established the galleries as two of the foremost galleries in the country. Today, both have merged to become Centaur Art Galleries – one of the largest, most reputable fine art galleries in America.

The gallery has set itself apart through its unique offers and special exhibits. All artwork is absolutely guaranteed and includes a certificate of authenticity. The gallery also offers a five-year exchange privilege, which means any work of art purchased is exchangeable for any reason. Free appraisals are also offered on all purchases made through the gallery.

Not only that, layaways are available. Long the domain of big department stores, it seems the art world, or at the very least, this gallery, is joining in on the bandwagon. Says Cyndie Foster, Senior Sales Consultant, “You can purchase any work of art with as little as a third deposit and pay for the balance over six months, with no interest,” adding, “Mr. Perry wants to bring art to everybody. There’s no such thing as a dumb question and getting exposed to it is key.”

 A Conversation with Artist Mark Lewis

What a long and circuitous route Mark Lewis travelled for the love of art. The way he tells it, it was as if it was one of the easiest things in the world, and in his case, this may very well be the truth – especially if you consider that it was only in 2006 that he “decided to pick up the paintbrush.”

Lewis summed-up his pre-art bio as “At age seventeen, I went into the navy and travelled the world; got out at 21, and went back to college, but was bartending in the evening,” adding, “I actually went into teaching bartending, then branched out into computers.” He admits that by early 2000, his successful computer company had run its course, and that he was “burned-out.” He recounts that when a friend had asked him what he wanted to do at that point, he had replied, “I want to be an actor.” He actually went back to school for this and garnered enough ‘bit parts’ and ‘walk-in scenes’ in such shows as “ER” and films like “Anger Management,” “Mr. and Mrs. Smith,” and “Monster in Law,” that he was able to sustain this lifestyle for four years.

Then the “art” bug hit him, though he says that, coming from a background in arts – his mother was a sketch artist for catalogs of old and his brother was “an incredible artist as a child,” – it wasn’t too difficult a transition, and in a way, almost inevitable. That was in 2006, and flash forward only four years later and he has an exclusive with one of the world’s most respected art galleries.

Citing the work of artists Andy Warhol and James Francis Gill, as his inspiration; Lewis says of Gill, whom he also knows personally, “I loved his work so much that I wanted to get in that vein. I wanted to compose living art – so when you look at it, it’s not ‘flat.’” Here’s one surprising thing about Lewis – when we asked, if like getting into acting, he went back to school for art courses, he said no. “I actually, believe it or not, picked up videos on painting. I’m a very rogue kind of individual, if I’m not having to be forced into a classroom environment, I prefer to do it that way,” he says.

-Rachel M. Sugay

Centaur Art Galleries

Main level, Fashion Show. Opening hours are 10 a.m. – 9 p.m., Monday-Saturday; 11:00 a.m. – 7 p.m., Sunday; 702-737-1234