Photo by Adam Finkle

At the opening of Modern West Fine Art last spring, the first thing guests commented on was not the huge totemic sculptures by Dick Jemison or the paintings by Shonto Begay—it was the floors, herringbone wood stained in varying shades of turquoise blue, as cool as a Santa Fe sky. 

Somehow it’s startling and refreshing to find blue underfoot instead of overhead where you expect it to be. 

The floor is the brainchild of Mark Hofeling, a partner in Kanab-based Alvarez/Hofeling Creative Services Bureau. Modern West owners Diane Stewart and Donna Poulton fell in love with a space he designed for a Sundance event and brought him into their gallery project. As a production designer who creates sets for all kinds of projects, Hofeling brings an out-of-the-box approach to interior design. For the Modern West gallery, Hofeling wanted different gradations of color in the wood planks—he separated the hickory panels into five different piles, giving each pile a different amount of stain, then pieced each panel back into place. The paintstaking process resulted in a sky-like mesmerizing undulation of blues.  

Hey. Don’t forget to look at the walls. There is art there, too. 

Modern West Fine Art, 177 E. 200 South, SLC, 801-355-3383

Back>>>Read other stories in our July/August 2014 issue.