Naples was still a small town back in the fall of 1979 when Natalie Guess moved here to pursue her art career after eight years of vacationing in this beautiful part of the world. Within the first year, she met her true love in life, artist Phil Fisher, a Naples resident since 1971.
The time they spent together involved “everything art” and the inspirations surrounding them. Two favorite places to absorb this environment were Crayton Cove and Corkscrew Swamp Sanctuary.
Phil has spent all these years interpreting his vision of Naples and various places traveled to in watercolors and oils. Natalie, on the other hand, procured the fine art of batik and created in clay to satisfy her obsession with 3-D mediums.
While this journey was unfolding, they opened the Fisher Gallery & Frame Shop in Golden Gate in 1983, and went on to raise two children, Tianna and Nolen. After 14 years of hard work, painting and creative thinking, Phil opened Phil Fisher Gallery on 5th Avenue South, as the time seemed right.
As 5th Avenue South changed, Phil’s studio space got overshadowed by a parking garage, the economy ran amuck, so a space opened up in Crayton Cove where the Everglades Angler had been.
Phil immediately saw its potential as a studio/gallery and moved to this location on 12th Avenue South and encouraged other artists to be part of this group including the three other art businesses that were already there. They started the Galleries of Crayton Cove with their premiere event, Art After Dark, on the second Saturday of each month from October to May.
During the years to follow, more galleries and artists have come and gone to leave a group of nine that continue to work together in this first ever community of professional artists in Old Naples, all within a one block walk. Natalie and Phil are happy to have come full circle and create new memories daily with those that come and experience their galleries in this magical business community in Naples.
They are two of the artists participating in “Third On Canvas,” a plein air event held Feb. 9 – 15, 2015 where the artists are painting out on location in Old Naples on the first two days of the event and the works are auctioned off on Sun. Feb. 15 to raise funds for the David Lawrence Center. The public is welcome to watch the artists paint and to purchase tickets for the auction event at the Port Royal Club and try your chance on owning some beautiful works of art for a good cause.
Come stroll the Galleries of Crayton Cove with your sweetheart from 6-9 p.m. on Saturday, Feb. 14 and visit the Phil Fisher Gallery and Guess-Fisher Gallery, as well as Arsenault Gallery, Nora Butler Designs, Vintage Charm, Random Acts of Art, Earth & Fire, Naples Ships Store and Art Gallery Old Naples2. Enjoy the inspiring culture of art and music made right here for all to experience. Where 8th St. S. and 12th Ave. S. meet at the flagpole. Art is for all! www.GalleriesOfCraytonCove.com.