Reilly had OCC gallery since 2005

       Laura Reilly, whose impressionist Territory Days painting graces the cover of this issue of the Westside Pioneer, has maintained a gallery in Old Colorado City for the past four years. The painting is one of her last before closing it this month and relocating to a studio in the new home of the Cottonwood Center for the Arts, 427 E. Colorado Avenue.

Laura Reilly is the creator of this year's Westside Pioneer Territory Days painting.
Tara Patty photo

       “It was great having a gallery in Old Colorado City,” said Reilly, who recalls drawing in the dirt as a small child and has been a professional artist since 1998. “Being a gallery owner allowed me to have daily interaction with a wide variety of people interested in art. Lots of people I met in the gallery had never had an opportunity to see an artist 'at work' - or to meet an artist in person.”
       Her works will continue to be offered in various galleries - for example, the original of her painting for this issue will be hanging at the Hunter-Wolff Gallery, 2510 W. Colorado Ave., as of May 23. However, part of the artist will miss having her own venue.
       “It's been a very tough decision, to decide to take a break from running the gallery, because I have enjoyed it so much,” Reilly said. “But as an artist, I have other opportunities and challenges I would like to pursue, so I've decided to give myself some time to have a more flexible schedule - and to be out in the world more with my paints!”
       Born in 1959 to a military family, Reilly “spent her childhood living and traveling in the American Southwest, England and Europe,” her website biography states. Married in 1981, she and her husband, Jack Reilly, a sculptor, settled in Colorado Springs. “Laura continued to pursue her passion to paint while raising her two young sons, Jesse Arlen and Jack Morgan Reilly, and working full-time first as an accountant, then as a District Court clerk,” the biography continues.
       Reilly said she favors the impressionistic style because it seems to provide a greater opportunity to give a painting a “lyrical, poetic quality… The calligraphy of the impressionist brushstrokes can reveal the personality of the artist - I like to see and feel the 'hand' of the artist at work, and to read the 'story' of the paint itself.”
       An original, Territory Days-related drawing or painting in the issue before the event has been a tradition with the Westside Pioneer dating back to its first year, 2004.

Westside Pioneer article