Happy New Year! Closed New Year's Day...open Friday & Saturday, January 2nd & 3rd, Noon to 4pm

Happy New Year, Everyone!
We want to thank all of you for making this one of our best holiday seasons ever! We hope you enjoyed shopping with us as much as as we enjoyed seeing all of you. We will be closed New Year's Day and been open for limited hours on Friday & Saturday, January 2nd & 3rd...Noon to 4pm. We will resume normal hours on Monday, January 5th...10am to 6pm.
These are the last few days of the "Art & Design: Converging Creativity" exhibition. If you haven't seen this show or would like to see it again please stop by and see this very entertaining art show. The exhibit ends on Monday, January 5th. Once again, very Happy New Year...have a great 2015!


A Happy Holiday season to all our customers!...Store now open Monday through Satuday 10am-6pm (Closed Sundays)...New Year's Eve open Noon to 4pm

Come see our beautiful holiday storefront windows designed by the creative team at Scaryhouse. Our hats off to Scary Dan Gildea, Mari Gildea, and Sam Cornn who created the glittering, revolving fantasy Snow Palace and the Flashing ferris wheel that will keep you in the holiday spirit through the New Year! Speaking of New Year's, J. R. Kortman has that special gift from our store or an original work of art from the Kortman Gallery for your New Year's celebration...a gift that will be treasured for lifetime!

J. R. Kortman Center for Design now open Sundays, 1-5pm...presenting 2 new Landmark Ornaments & Rockford-themed gift ideas

J. R. Kortman is now open on Sundays in December, 1–5pm. There's no place like home for the holidays and celebrate your hometown with Rockford themed gifts! This year 2 new hand-painted ornaments have been added to the Rockford Landmark Ornament Collection..."Blackhawk" Statue & St. Anthony Church. Also, metal bookend "Symbols," compact Rockford candles in souvenir tins, and new scented candles in a jar make great holiday party gifts or fun stocking stuffers. Shop Monday thru Saturday 10am to 6pm and Sundays 1–5pm. Check our Facebook page for more gift ideas throughout the season. See you soon!


Live Music, Great Art, and Holiday Shopping this First Friday @ J. R. Kortman Center for Design

This First Friday (Dec.5th) will be a fantastic evening at J. R. Kortman Center for Design. You will be able to Explore our store until 9pm and discover perfect gifts for the holidays. And then relax upstairs over A Berry Merry Martini served up by master bartender Dennis Horton surrounded by the Art+Design: Converging Creativity" group exhibition... AND.... enjoy Live musical performances (6-9pm) from 2 amazing young musicians, Michael Campa and Marcus Tecarro. Michael has been playing piano for around 7 and a half years, and also plays guitar, bass, auxiliary percussion, and ukulele.  He takes piano lessons/orchestra lessons at the Music Academy of Rockford, along with his friend and fellow pianist/ukulelist/violinist, Marcus Tecarro. The two will be playing music ranging from Bach to Debussy, and Beethoven to Bill Evans. This will really be a holiday treat for everyone this First First Friday in the Kortman Gallery and Downtown Rockford!


J. R. Kortman premiers "Snow Palace" holiday windows by ScaryHouse for Downtown Merry & Bright celebration November 29th


You won't want to miss "Merry & Bright! Stroll on State" Saturday evening (Nov. 29) from 4 to 9pm. Make sure you stop by J. R. Kortman Center for Design and see our holiday windows designed by the creative team at ScaryHouse...Concept artists "Scary" Dan Gildea, Mari Rocha Gildea, and Sam Cornn have created "Snow Palace," a beautiful visually interactive display that will make the season Merry & Bright for all who see it. You'll see the "abominable snow monkeys" who have come to protect the Snow Palace where Santa stores all the cool gifts from around the world. Step inside J. R. Kortman and EXPLORE the colorful gift ideas that are inside the shimmering white Snow Palace!
     And then make your way upstairs to the Kortman Gallery and see the amazing "Art+Design: Converging Creativity" holiday group exhibition. See what wonderful works 40 great Rockford artists created from 5 intriguing design objects. Tim Stotz will be tending the Kortman Gallery Bar serving up "Berry, Merry Martinis" and hot Gluhwein created by Stephanie Caltagerone. Relax with holiday cheer overlooking the holiday ice rink placed on Main Street right in front of our store! Hope to see you Saturday night...Merry & Bright!


Thanksgiving holiday ideas for your table...from J. R. Kortman

As we approach the Thanksgiving holiday here are some ides that can add some fun and elegance to you holiday table...starting with a holiday guest book to fill with thoughts of gratitude, elegant stainless steel serving utensils, 3-tiered food presenter, beautiful gold & silver bird salt & pepper, glass domed butter dish by Michael Graves, and hostess guide to entertaining...


J.R. Kortman Center for Design celebrates Anniversary on November 20th!

On this day, November 20th, in 1986, J. R. Kortman Center for Design opened for business. We wanted to set a positive tone for our Downtown and show how you can redefine the city center by creating an alternative retail environment with an urban and entertaining experience. Our goal has been to bring merchandise and art not available anywhere else in the city, with taste & style. We have always had high hopes for our Downtown. It's taken a generation, but the city now seems to be catching on and understanding the importance of a vibrant center city.
    We have been fortunate to have so much encouragement from so many people over the years, especially Nancy Froelich (Doc’s sister) who has worked in the store and stood by us since day one. We can’t thank her enough!
    We would also like to thank the Rockford media, especially the Rock River Times, the Rockford Register-Star, and the Rockford Area Convention & Visitors Bureau...all who have over the years helped promote our art events and unique store experience.
    Also, a big thanks to the wonderful and creative artists who have exhibited in the Kortman Gallery over the years and added so much visual excitement and cultural vitality to the  Rockford arts community.
    But most of all, a grand thank you to our loyal and entertaining customers who have shopped with us, which now spans 2 generations of adventurous, curious, sophisticated shoppers with a sense of taste & style. THANK YOU!
Doc&Jerry
    (Painting of storefront by Ken Biddle, c. 1988)



Art and Design Converges in Kortman Gallery Holiday Group Exhibition featuring 40 Rockford Artists

The merger of the imaginative worlds of art and design challenges artists to create original and expressive works of art in an innovative holiday group exhibition opening Friday, November 21st in the Kortman Gallery.
“Art+Design: Converging Creativity” presents multi-media works by more than 40 Rockford artists invited to be inspired by 5 inventive, unembellished functional objects designed to be enhanced by someone else.
    “Our store has always featured products with an emphasis on good design, and the gallery has consistently shown fantastic art by local artists,” said Doc Slafkosky co-owner of J. R. Kortman Center for Design and the Kortman Gallery. “We thought we would merge the creative works of both artists and designers into one stimulating and invigorating exhibition for this holiday season.”
    The artists were invited to choose among a “paper” watch, a stuffed toy monkey, a “house” candle holder, a cardboard radio, or a wooden robot puzzle figure, and transform these designer products into works of art.
    Ceramic artist and art professor at Rock Valley College Lynn Fischer Carlson chose the toy monkey designed by SUCK UK of London. “The designer provided me with an whimsical form that gave me a foundation to tell my own artistic story using the materials and techniques I normally create with,” said Fisher Carlson. “This was not only challenging, but great fun!”
    Artist David Menard, who chose the robot puzzle figure called Cubebot designed by David Weeks Studio of New York City said this exhibit has given him the opportunity to break some rules.. “The world of design is more restrictive than art,” said Menard, art professor at Rockford University. “There are no rules in art, which is a distinctive difference between these two creative disciplines. But what’s most exciting is being a part of the community of artists that are exhibiting in this show.”
    Participating artists include: Jeremy Klonicki, Sarah Bell, Michelle Dorr, John Deill, Kyle Wolfe,  Brian Hierstein, Joanne Gustafson, Matt Herbig, Corey Hagberg, Sarah Danielle Stewart, Una Ryan, Jesus Correa, Paul Pinzarrone, Drew Helge, Norm Knott, Becky Pelley, Margret Hesler-Hynes, Shari Grace, Keith Grace, Javier Jimenez, Lisa Jimenez, Maggie Thienemann, R Scott Long, Betsy Youngquist, Joe Goral, Jennifer Johansson, Lynn Fischer Carlson, Dave Menard, Molly Carter, Pam Kehoe-Peterson, Sarah Reed-McNamara, Valerie Olafson, Craig Olafson, Karen Harding, Cherri Rittenhouse, Jarrod Hennis, Britney Lindgren, Steve Pitkin, Michael Bugler, Leslie Arbetman, and Matt Vincent.
    To celebrate this exhibition the holiday windows at J. R. Kortman Center for Design will be created by ingenious concept artists Dan Gildea and Mari Rocha Gildea using the five designer objects featured in the gallery exhibit along with other store products.
    The opening reception for “Art+Design: Converging Creativity,” a holiday group exhibition of works by more than 40 artists will be Friday, November 21st, 5:30 to 10pm, The exhibit will run through January 3rd, 2015.
      The Kortman Gallery is located upstairs at J. R. Kortman Center for Design, 107 North Main Street, Downtown Rockford. For more information call 815.968.0123


"Velvet Realms" installation by Hot Dose! continues through November 15th in the Kortman Gallery

Here are some images of the "Velvet Realms" installation by Hot Dose! a.k.a. Corey Hagberg & Sarah Danielle Stewart. See this fantastic exhibition now through November 15th on the Kortman Gallery. Enjoy this exhibition with a relaxing drink this First Friday, November 7th...master  bartender Dennis Horton will be hosting the Kortman Gallery Bar all evening. We will also be unveiling 2 new hand-painted landmark ornaments to the Rockford Landmark Ornament Collection this Friday. The store will be open until 9pm and the gallery even later.