Moonstones Gallery is located in Cambria, California. Cambria is a beautiful small village on scenic Highway 1 nestled in an ancient pine rain forest that emerges from the Pacific Ocean at the southern end of Big Sur. Cambria is not far from Hearst Castle® , the towns of San Simeon, Big Sur, Morro Bay and the Paso Robles wine region. This pristine coastline is truly one of the most spectacular areas to visit in the world.
Moonstones Gallery is where American imagination takes shape. We present one of our nation's most exciting collections of finely crafted American artwork. Artisans working in a variety of media express their passion in imaginative moonstone jewelry, fashion accessories, intricate hardwood jewelry boxes, kinetic sculptures, wind and garden sculptures, colorful kaleidoscopes and other beautiful handmade creations.
We chose the name Moonstones for our gallery because there is a beautiful beach in Cambria called Moonstone Beach. It is covered with many colorful stones. One of the small stones found there is a translucent white chalcedony that seems to glow with the Moon's light. Moonstone, like Cambria, is considered by locals and travelers alike to be a very special find.
For a look at Cambria History go to: www.cambriahistoricalsociety.com
Click here for a map of the Central Coast of California and directions to Moonstones Gallery.
If you are interested in viewing and learning about Elephant Seals you can find them up the coast a few miles near Piedras Blancas Lighthouse. The Central Coast Friends of the Elephant Seals web site is www.elephantseal.org
The Art of America
We have chosen to specialize in American Art for several reasons. The number one reason is that America is where we live, physically, emotionally and spiritually. We believe in our country and we are very proud of the progress we have made as a relatively new nation and in the contributions we have made to the world. America is an idea. It was conceived of by our founders who risked everything they had to give birth to their vision. The concepts they fought for changed the world. They gave us the freedom to imagine and fostered the courage to take risk in the marketplace of ideas. Unlike in most countries in the world we are free to turn our creative ideas into useful products, services or works of art.
The artisans we deal with have become our friends, some are our neighbors, all are our countrymen. We have found that our business relationships took on more meaning when we knew the people who made our products. Our artists in many cases are the people we grew into adults with. We have seen them raise their kids, buy their houses and develop their craft. This brings a depth to our lives that most other retailers may not have the opportunity to enjoy. Another reason we carry American work is that we have found it to be, without question, the best quality craftwork we have been able to find anywhere. This has made our choices so much easier over the years because we were able to eliminate the myriad of decisions other galleries and gift stores have had to make when they choose from the immense amount of merchandise flooding our shores from other countries. It has kept our product mix strong and true. It has allowed us to focus on one niche market that we feel makes the best products in the world.
You can find less expensive versions of our products but you cannot find better products on the market or for that matter better value. When you factor in the environmental and safety regulations that our American craftsman employ in their craft you begin to understand why their products can be a little bit higher in cost than imported knock offs.
They are still a bargain when you consider the superior materials and design. News reports are filled with stories of unsafe and inferior products coming to our shores from overseas. Paying a little bit more for a better product that uses safe, clean manufacturing methods only makes sense. This may run counter to much of the press about American products but I can only tell you about what I have learned from experience. American design and craftsmanship is better, a lot better. American craftsmen actually place more resources and time into their products than do mass marketers. They are not throw away knock off products. You have not saved anything by purchasing a product that is not well made or does not endure. There are many ways to support your country, especially in these troubling times. I cannot think of a better way than to support the American spirit of creativity than by purchasing the products of American Craftsmen.
What is Art?
It is a question that has been asked for thousands of years. I have been in the American Craft movement since 1970 and I have been asked that question many times by clients and by artisans. Is a beautifully crafted rocking chair art?
I like to shift the answer to the realm of creativity and the mystery that surrounds it. It appears to me to be an innate drive of the human spirit. You can also see it at work in the wonderful creativity of our natural world. I mean could you really make up some of the strange creatures you see in the world in your imagination if you tried? I think in humans it is a natural expression of this same force that creates this exotic world and for that matter us.
The creation of a painting or the creation of a beautifully sculpted chair are both art forms. Skill and a keen imagination are involved in the translation from physical raw materials into art. "No-thing" is elevated to "Some-thing". It is like poetry, only of the physical. The important thing is that you see spirit infused into the tangible. It will make your life richer when you appreciate this talent both in yourself and in others. At Moonstones Gallery we attempt to bring you examples of this spirit instilled into art forms so you can have and enjoy them in your home and work environment. If you love it, if that love endures, then it must be art. Art is the marriage of craft and imagination.
Robert Unger Owner
Another unique find is the gift of finely crafted American Art at Moonstones Gallery.
Moonstones Gallery can be found in the Historic East Village of Cambria at 4070 Burton Drive. Many of the businesses on Burton Drive and in the East Village of Cambria are open at night. We invite you to visit us soon. Click here to find us on Welcome Map. Lodging and many fine restaurants are within walking distance. We are open every evening for you're after dinner enjoyment.