Designed by celebrated architect Frank Gehry, the Ohr-O'Keefe Museum of Art exalts the work of George E. Ohr, a ceramic artist and moustache enthusiast known as the "Mad Potter of Biloxi." After it was destroyed in 2005 by Hurricane Katrina, the campus reopened in 2010 amidst a grove of ancient live-oak trees, featuring a series of six aesthetically impressive pavilions that include a welcome center, a gallery of African-American art, and an interpretive center inside a reconstruction of the house of emancipated craftsman Pleasant Reed. Current exhibitions include collections from some of the art world's biggest names, including Andy Warhol and ceramic sculptor Jun Kaneko, as well as selections from Ohr's Gulf Coast collection, which inspired the American Modernist movement and several MLB baseball teams to wear ceramic pots instead of baseball hats.
The professionals at Pineapple Gallery specialize in conservation framing and only use acid-free materials when framing prized family photos and valuable artwork. For added protection, the framers finish jobs with museum-quality glass. Patrons also can look for new wall decorations in Pineapple Gallery’s collection of paintings and prints from various artists.
A hip-limbering hula-hoop-style class, hooping offers a low-impact way for exercisers of all fitness levels to strengthen cores while potentially burning about 500–800 calories per hour. Choose from three separate classes: the 45-minute basic hooping class, which teaches fundamental moves; the 50-minute hoopilates workout, which synergistically combines Pilates and hula hooping; and the 30-minute cardio hoops class, which is a high-energy cardio class that will engage even the most languid of abs. Hula hoops are also provided for in-class use, so there’s no need to cobble one from old timey wagon wheels.
French children’s books. Rare, local cookbooks. Novels set in the muggy air of Louisiana. All of these tomes line the blonde wood shelves at Blue Cypress Books, home to a trove of more than 12,000 new and high-quality secondhand books. Gathered by the owner and chief bookkeeper, the store’s selection runs the gamut from New York Times bestselling paperbacks to antiquarian sets kept in slipcase in order to guard against spilling coffee or liquid nitrogen on their leather covers. The resident gray-and-white tabby cat, Kitty Meow, lounges amid browsers as they peek at the affordable prices penciled on the inside pages of an extensive youth collection.
Something always seems to be happening at Blue Cypress, too. Children's book readings captivate little ones, and author signings let guests hobnob with professional wordsmiths. The shop also hosts performances of local music as well as monthly book-club meetings, during which locals share favorite recipes for broiling mystery novels.
The staff at Alltmont's Fine Custom Framing works with clients to devise unique combinations of frames and archival materials to protect photos, paintings, portraits, and memorabilia. Under the direction of expert framer Jeff Alltmont, Alltmont's Fine Custom Framing encloses wall hangings of all types in elegant, expertly crafted edgings. Within a large, bright workshop and retail space, customers peruse thousands of frame samples that adorn the walls in a single-file parade of right angles, displaying all available custom-frame colors, styles, and sizes. The friendly craftspersons at Alltmont's Fine Custom Framing obligingly advise customers in the process of designing the frame that gives their picture the snazziest hug, including custom mirrors, cork, and chalkboards. Each piece of Alltmont's handiwork is specially fitted to the specific treasure it houses, whether priceless works of art, pride-inducing diplomas and awards, or prized Vincent van Gogh Super Bowl jerseys.
Since 1964, Maple Street Book Shops have fueled local imaginations with novels and nonfiction works by classic, contemporary, and local writers. Originally "five rooms of paperbacks," the store now has four locations, including two charming, side-by-side establishments on the shop’s titular residential street. Here, a purple and green cottage houses a collection of 9,000 used tomes, and next door, the pink house sells the sweet perfume wrung from glossy new paperbacks. In addition to browsing the crowded shelves and chatting with the knowledgeable staff of one-time teachers, writers, and printmakers, visitors can chat with authors at sociable events.