BY CLAIRE HARLIN
A shop that offers a 10-percent discount to locals, carries items that women “must have,” and showcases not-just-your-everyday-landscape local artwork.
That’s the vision behind Del Mar Art & Gifts. And although he chose a rather simple name, owner Arthur Ball’s inspiration for the business that will replace Earth Song Books on Nov. 18 goes much deeper.
Ball, a 67-year-old self-proclaimed “artaholic” and advocate of karma, said it was “the Universe” that led him to open a shop in Del Mar. But a statistic he said he heard somewhere also provided inspiration.
“Eighty percent of all art is sold to people traveling,” he said. “It makes sense. Whenever I travel I find something, and there is a specific energy and memory attached to that piece, something special that defies time.”
The shop will offer mainly art of all kinds, from up to 30 local artists at any given time, as well as other items such as handmade greeting cards, hats, ceramics, candles and lotions.
“It will be more of an art store than a traditional gallery,” said Ball. “We want to offer items that aren’t a gazillion dollars.”
Ball will also be selling a book he wrote and self-published — “Karma Rules.”
A cancer survivor, Ball went through chemotherapy a little over a year ago, he said. At that time, he owned a printing company and sold his interests in the business to his nephew.
“For a while, I thought I was going to have to buy the box,” he said about being faced with death.
After his recovery, Ball said he felt as though he didn’t need to do anything other than enjoy and share art. A metal sculptor, Ball rented space in other shops to show and sell his work, but said he didn’t like the fact that shop owners got to pick and choose what to display.
“Every piece of art means something different to every person,” he said. “I needed artistic freedom, and I want to be able to show whatever I want.”
Del Mar Art & Gifts will be located at 1440 Camino Del Mar, CA, 92014.