Gallery offers glimpse into ‘magical’ world of art

“We have magical things in a magical home.”

That is how Michael Coull describes his gallery, In a Heartbeat, located in the heart of Eden Mills. Coull moved to Eden Mills about four seasons ago.

“It was the dream of mine, and a friend of mine, to have a gallery here,” he said. “The house seemed to work itself perfectly for that.” He explained the building, on Eden Mills’ main street, is an old store from the 1860s.

Coull had purchased several of area sculptor Jamie Brick’s works in the past.

“He agreed to come and have a one-man show as part of the Eden Mills Writers Festival in 2008 … and he’s back a year later.”

From the original show, the gallery has expanded.

“It’s just worked out perfectly,” Coull said.

Flight of the Dragonfly

Brick, of the Kingston area, explained the life-cast sculptures are of real people – models who come in and have castings made. Those are filled with resin, then old cedar roots and old antique silver he finds.

“I find the combination works really well together – the ornate silver and the rustic wood,” Brick said.

He counts Celtic mythology, fantasy stories and the like among his influences. He feels it’s difficult to say what precisely got him into this specific form of art, although he admits he spent a lot of time as a youth rafting on a river, looking for mermaids.

“I couldn’t find them, so when I grew up, I started making them.” He said he’s always loved the fantasy stories with fairies and other magical creatures.

He started as a woodcarver, then about 15 years ago he experimented casting a person’s face and took measurements from that.

“I had the piece on my workbench and it fit perfectly into this piece of wood that I had.” At that point, he forgot about carving it and started playing with joining the two together.

“It’s taken off and changes every year as I go,” he said, noting the Dragonfly is the newest piece. Brick explained that Coull wanted a chandelier-style lamp with “a wo­man turning into a dragonfly … so this is what I came up with.

“When I start a piece, I never know exactly how it’s going to turn out. I started with the model, with her back arched a little to get the feeling of flight. It was just a question of putting pieces of wood together to see what emerges.”

Current gallery hours for Flight of the Dragonfly showing are Friday 12 to 6pm and Saturday and Sunday between 10am and 6pm or by appointment.

For info. contact Coull at in.a.heart­beat­ or visit