Creating spaces for art to thrive is becoming more and more important as the world goes digital. Marquee is one such space in Asheville that was borne of the vision of lighting designer, antique dealer, entrepreneur, and real estate developer, Robert Nicholas. In this episode, we find out all about how the grand exhibition space that is Marquee came to be, the spirit it represents, how it works in terms of curation and transaction, and so much more! Robert shares his love for seeking value in things others would discard, as well as his excitement for discovering new styles and techniques. We learn about the magnetism of antiques, the Artist Support Pledge, and the bright future ahead for the magnificent Marquee! Tune in to find out more about the institution that is sure to become one of Asheville’s major sightseeing destinations.
Key Points From The Robert Nicholas Episode:
- The wonderful new Marquee development in Asheville, founded by Robert Nicholas.
- What sparked his vision for Marquee and the process of turning it into what it is today!
- The challenges of Robert’s undertaking and how Covid spurred him on.
- What his studio and gallery, Splurge, specializes in and how it began.
- Robert’s curation process for Marquee.
- The size of the space and how many exhibitors (“cast members”) are currently exhibiting.
- How to make purchases at the Marquee.
- Robert’s journey from being a youth pastor to becoming a real estate developer and an antique dealer.
- The value in the discarded.
- The philosophy behind the eclectic mix of artists, artisans, and aesthetics at Marquee.
- What inspired the name, “Marquee” and the spirit Robert wanted the space to represent.
- How much space Splurge has in the Marquee.
- How the Artist Support Pledge kept Robert creative during the lockdowns.
- Robert’s vision for the future of Marquee.
- Robert explains the magnetism of antiques.
- What gave him the idea for Uncommon Market in Asheville.
- Why he encourages originals over prints at Marquee.
Longer Robert Nicholas Quotes:
“I’m not thankful for COVID by any means but I’m thankful that I was able to look at life differently, look at our finances differently, look at my vision differently, my family differently, and realize, ‘You know what? I’m headed towards the 60 number of age and I’m not done. I’ve still got a lot of life and energy and excitement in me.’ So, it really helped to spur me on to have my doors closed, use my hands to do creative things that I wasn’t doing prior.” — Robert Nicholas [0:14:51]
“For me, going back to seeing value in things other people would discard, it’s like, there are so many things that have yet to be created, so many things that have yet to be designed and I get more excited about seeing things I haven’t seen. Techniques, styles. I think that’s one reason that I’m a lighting designer. I don’t know a lot of lighting designers and I create something that rooms are built around, or spaces are built around, instead of, ‘That doesn’t fit in my style.’” — Robert Nicholas [0:30:38]
“[Marquee] has not been a ‘just add water’ type of opportunity. It was quite daunting starting out with this but our doors are wide open and we are packed full of the best talent in the area.” — @splurgedesign [0:06:15]
“The pictures [of the Marquee] are not worth a thousand words. It really takes the experience of hitting your senses to get a grasp of it.” — @splurgedesign [0:13:03]
“[With] the antique/vintage world, you’re recycling history.” — @splurgedesign [0:46:50]
“When I go antiquing, it’s the thrill of the hunt of finding something that was misplaced.” — @splurgedesign [0:47:32]
Links Mentioned in Robert Nicholas Episode:
- Splurge Design — http://www.splurgedesign.com/
- Splurge by Robert Nicholas on Instagram — @splurgedesign
- Splurge by Robert Nicholas on Facebook — https://www.facebook.com/splurgedesign/
- Splurge by Robert Nicholas on Twitter — https://twitter.com/splurgedesign
- Marquee — https://marqueeasheville.com/
- The Greatest Showman — https://www.imdb.com/title/tt1485796/
- Water For Elephants — https://www.amazon.com/Water-Elephants-Novel-Sara-Gruen/dp/0340962720
- Artist Support Pledge — https://artistsupportpledge.com/
- Uncommon Market — https://uncommonmarketasheville.com/
- Artsville Podcast — https://artsville.captivate.fm/
- Scott “Sourdough” Power — https://www.notarealartist.com/
- Louise Glickman — https://www.louiseglickman.com/
- Daryl Slaton — http://www.tailsofwhimsy.com/
- Crewest Studio — https://creweststudio.com/
- Sand Hill Artists Collective (SHAC) — https://sandhillartists.com/