in 1984 by Karen and Lewis Strange, Artpho Gallery has become a way of
life for many Lake of the Ozarks residents and visitors.
When Lewis and Karen met in 1978, they immediately knew they had a common
bond. She was a struggling free-lance artist, he was a locomotive engineer
who shot photographs as a hobby. After dating a mere two months, they
were married. "Why waste time?" Karen laughed. "We had
work to do!"
They united in marriage and compatibility. He shot photos; she painted
them. Together, they capitalized on an unusual combination of creating
art and publicized their work far and wide. Karen produced twenty-nine
limited edition prints, copyrighted cartoon characters in the likenesses
of her and Lewis, and the couple spent six years traveling the show circuit
displaying their wares. Karen had many one-woman shows to her credit,
with the most exciting being a special exhibit in the Missouri State Capitol
Rotunda showcasing original oil portraits of Missouri Outlaws that the
couple had researched.
They spent much of their spare time traveling throughout the western United
States, jeeping the Rocky Mountains and prowling the deserts of the Southwest
in search of materials to photograph and paint. Karen wrote of many of
their adventures and many of their art pieces found their way into numerous
Always having the desire to own a gallery, Karen's dream came true in
Osage Beach in 1984. The couple already had the name in place by combining
the word "artist" and "photographer" to form their
company, Artpho Limited Productions, so they titled their new business
"Artpho Gallery and Frame". Knowing nothing about the framing
industry, the couple learned their new craft quickly as a following began
to emerge. Always believing in providing a good product to the client,
Karen and Lewis began to intertwine creative ideas into quality custom
framing and soon made a name for themselves. They became busy enough to
require additional help, and the Artpho staff began to emerge.
"I have always wanted staff members to be a part of the team. They
don't work for me; they work with me to create special pieces that the
client will always treasure. Whether it is a family heirloom or a decorative
piece to fit just the right décor, our staff wants the client to
feel special and for them to always view the piece with pleasant memories,"
Artpho Gallery has grown immensely over the years and enjoys friends and
customers from throughout the country. Lake of the Ozark natives Karen
and Lewis Strange have made many friends over the years and consider each
one to be special. They will continue to create their special designs
for many years to come, and if one is observant, he or she just might
see a jeep pulled alongside a lake bluff or bathed in a glowing sunset
somewhere in the lake area as the Strange's create yet another treasure
Gallery & Frame
1075 Main Street ~ Osage Beach, Missouri 65065
At Beautiful "Lake of the Ozarks"