The spirit of Leon Russell and his historic Church Studio infuses much of what is now known as Studio Row, a collection of businesses near East Third Street and South Trenton Avenue.
It’s no surprise artists have found the neighborhood. On the corner sits Hummingbird Fine Craft Cooperative, a local gallery of handmade arts and goods that opened Jan. 1. Thirteen different artists are represented.
“This is truly run by the people invested in it,” says Martha Wells, co-op president. “It makes us different than any other artist endeavor in the area.”
Wells started making jewelry six years ago. She uses genuine gemstones and precious metals to create one-of-a-kind pieces for sale in the space. Another co-op artist is Jezz Strutt, co-op vice president, who started taking pottery classes at age 50 and took her hobby full time five years ago.
Guests to the shop can find intricate artwork from mixed-media artists and painters, to jewelry, pottery and fabric artisans, as well as an artfully curated collection of vintage and modern apparel. There is even a local beekeeper who makes bee and honey-related products.
Wells says Hummingbird’s customers are a little more in tune with the music scene; after all, the cooperative gets its name from a Russell song. Strutt says the group is looking forward to the day when the nearby Church Studio renovation is complete. The expectations of tourists and locals alike flocking to the area excites Wells and Strutt.
Along with being a place that sells art, Hummingbird hosts — and will host again once coronavirus restrictions lessen — events, workshops and art experiences. “We would like to be a center where people can experience art,” Wells says. “It’s all about the art.”