HealeyGrisham Photography Celebrates 100 Years with a Renovation
Dallas, TX, April 14, 2005 - One hundred years and counting! A completed studio renovation marks a century anniversary for HealeyGrisham's historic Bluitt building. HealeyGrisham, a Dallas commercial photography studio is celebrating the 100th anniversary of its headquarters - The Bluitt Building. Originally built by the first African American surgeon operating a hospital in Texas, the majestic three-story brick building now houses the digital laboratory for visual artistes, Joe Grisham and Janet Healey. The couple is known in the photographic world for their unique bold vision, strong attention to detail, and their one-of-a-kind portfolio of wonderfully eclectic dog photographs.
The Bluitt Building stands near the corner of Commerce and Pearl, just short of Deep Ellum, and caps off a five-block stretch of some of the more notable Dallas historical architecture. Barely out of the shadows of the Adolphus Hotel, Magnolia Building, Wilson Building, and the illustrious Mercantile Bank Building, the construction of this photography studio actually pre-dates three of the aforementioned four structures. Currently, the building is receiving a fresh coat of exterior appointments, and a darker trim, marking the definitive return to its early 20th century roots. There are now plans to present huge renditions of HealeyGrisham images on the west facing of the building, dramatically emphasizing the work—taking place within. 'Less a billboard, and more appropriately, this will represent a thirty foot tall brick photograph. Indeed, the principals of this studio have managed to keep one eye on the industry and another, well fixed on the fine art world.
On the first floor, you will find an intimate gallery, displaying photographs from their animal collection. Many of these were commissioned by local dog rescues or the Dallas Humane Society—in the course of HealeyGrisham's endless pro bono work. In addition to these stunning photographs, patrons are often greeted by several resident pooches that happily serve as the gallery hosts’. The second floor is very much the technical epicenter, filled with multiple photo sets and a staff of photographers and stylists milling away on the latest J.C. Penney catalog or SBC/Yahoo! advertisement.
The top floor, blazing with the natural light that photographers crave, exposes the true beauty of the old brick walls and tall ceilings. Here, the cool, confident balance of weathered Texan style and a classic modern aesthetic is best displayed. Amongst a couple of unrestricted, open air offices, it is not unusual to see 12-15 people gathered around a massive, rolling antique work table, sharing their lunch break together (another grand HealeyGrisham tradition). The discussion over food often includes the work being done on the building and its heritage... "What's the story behind that signature on the wall over there... and, why are there no apparent ghostly spirits from the original Bluitt hospital?" As inconsequential as it may seem, conversations such as these are the core reason for preservation. Rich Texan history, passed from one generation to the next, creating a better understanding of people, place and time.