An Artistic Tradition Continues
By Laura Jackson
It’s hard to imagine Allen Lund as a stockbroker. But the quintessential artist who grew up among an entire family of artists first tested the waters with business school, finance and securities before being drawn back to his artistic roots.
Allen’s story is very uncommon among the early careers of most professional artists—he actually started selling paintings that very first year of trying. Within the next three years, interest in his paintings had spread like wildfire, and the demand was already more than a full time job.
“I think growing up in a family of artists, he didn’t fully realize how unique his family’s artistic talents really were,” explains his wife and co-gallery owner, Debbie Lund.
Allen describes how he has always innately seen the world around him, “I see everything in shape and color. From mountains and trees, to faces and bodies, I see color everywhere. Where you see a blue sky, I see at least ten colors that make the sky beautiful.”
For the next 25 years of his career, Allen and Debbie traveled the country participating in art shows from coast to coast while acquiring loyal clients and lasting friendships with other artists and collectors along the way. The Lunds opened their own gallery in Park City at 591 Main in February 2015.
Allen’s soulful landscape paintings burst with luminous color and easily reveal a deep love for his native Utah. You can also see amazing jewelry and metalwork by his brother, James, who teaches art at the Sundance Institute and Salt Lake Community College. Their mother, Nancy Lund, is also an accomplished painter, contributing mesmerizing watercolor and oil pieces. Aunt Lanny Barnard provides inspiring oil paintings and unique jewelry creations. And just in case you get the munchies after a delightful gallery stroll, down the street you can get a taste of the art of a restauranteur, where Jeff Barnard, Allen’s cousin and a partner with the Salt Lake City-based Edison Alley Group, recently purchased Park City’s well-known restaurant, The Eating Establishment.
The gallery continues to experience rapid and impressive growth, and includes many other remarkable artists. “Having the ability to work with so many incredible artists over the years,” explains Debbie, “puts us in a unique situation to handpick the artists we have already experienced, and possibly previously worked with, as well as recognize
their unique talents.” Part of the Lunds’ philosophy in choosing art is to uniquely represent different art genres. “If you come in looking for a certain type of sculpture, for example, we don’t have several different artists doing the same type of work. Our goal is to present the best of unique genres.”
Another way Lunds Fine Art aims to set itself apart in the competitive art gallery world is through use of the studio-gallery concept. Allen explains, “We wanted to capture what we believe is the true purpose of the gallery experience, to create a place where an artist can complete a work of art and immediately hang it in its dedicated place in the gallery.”
You can find Allen painting in the front of the gallery most Thursday- Saturday afternoons and see his true creative powers in action. Many guests of the gallery are initially drawn in to watch Allen paint by the sheer beauty of the colors on his palette; they’re then intrigued by how it all comes together.
It’s immediately clear that Allen is very comfortable painting in front of large crowds because he has done so much of it throughout his career, among so many art show destinations across the country. Inquiring minds usually want to know, “How long have you been working on this painting?” or “How do you make that section glow with light?” and his answers vary from each new painting to the next.
Allen describes how he has always been captivated by the incredible bounty and variety that Utah provides for his work. “When I paint, I like to select subjects from my own experiences with local scenery and use them to create an emotional connection to a place and its atmosphere.” Across many mountains, fields, streams and
seasons, the natural artistic beauty of Utah and the Lund family continue to inspire.