For the last 20 years, the Darlene and Barry Gregson have dedicated themselves to the advancing Rustic Art and quite possibly operating America's longest running strictly rustic furniture gallery. Their passion has resulted in not only the creation of museum quality furniture, but a gallery and an annual Rustic Expo that showcase the best forest inspired furniture and furnishings, presenting demonstrations and hosting workshops, and bringing up a whole new generation of fine rustic artists.
Not wanting to spend a lot of money, and needing some furniture for his home, Barry Gregson began looking around his property. In the historical tradition of the Adirondack natives, he decided to use the natural materials he found to make a few chairs for his house.... thus began Barry's love for rustic furniture and his journey toward becoming a master artisan in the tradition of 'tree art' or rustic furniture building.
While initially purchased by clients for whom he was building fireplaces, and family and friends, word spread about Barry’s fine Rustic furniture to the point that he and Darlene decided to make it a full time business. They needed a space to showcase the work and therefore opened their first Gallery in their home on Charley Hill Road in Schroon Lake, NY. They decided to name it Adirondack Rustics, which they discovered was the first business so and similarly named when they registered it at the Essex County Government Center.
Craig Gillborn, Director of the Adirondack Museum, invited Barry to demonstrate how he creates his furniture and help spread the word about the beauty and quality of rustic art to the thousands of visitors that attend the popular museum in Blue Mountain Lake. Barry's talents and artistry continued to grow during this time as he developed unique and original designs for his furniture.
Barry and Darlene moved the Adirondack Rustic Gallery out of their home to downtown Schroon Lake, New York and took up residency in an old blacksmith shop. They began to feature additional pieces by some of the nations’ most prominent rustic artists.
Barry's oldest son, Matthew, joined the team of fine rustic craftsmen at the Gallery and launched the career of the first of the second generation making furniture. Matthew has won many awards since his start in rustic furniture, 14 years ago.
The gallery was brought back to the Charley Hill location. Barry continued to refine his skills and began to mentor other rustic furniture craftsmen from America and abroad.... England, Canada, Australia, Ireland...
Dylan, Barry's youngest son, and Skye, his daughter, began to contribute their artwork to the gallery. Skye's first chair won an award in the 2004 Northeastern Woodworking Association.
Darlene and Barry, with the help of Barry's brothers and sons, renovated an old restaurant on the south side of Schroon Lake (Route 9) and launched the new Adirondack Rustic Gallery creating an open spacious living-room experience to showcase the artwork of the expanding number of artists affiliated with the gallery. The gallery included a dramatic stone fireplace to create a true Great Camp atmosphere.
After requests by many visitors, artists and customers, Adirondack Rustic Gallery launched the Annual Adirondack Rustic Expo held the second weekend of July and featuring the leading artists of forest inspired furniture and furnishings.
In 2004, the Gregsonï¿½s organized the Opening Night Preview of the Adirondack Rustic Expo as a benefit for the Natural History Museum of the Adirondacks and have added both a Saturday Night Barkeaterï¿½s Ball and a Sunday Patronï¿½s Breakfast with the Artists.