Sheila Shockey is the owner of the 80 Santa Fe Art Gallery, and is the founder and CEO of Shockey Consulting. The gallery and consulting firm share a space in an historic building in Downtown Overland Park, Kansas.
She has held leadership positions in city management, public works, and planning for local governments as a staff member or consultant since 1989. She is an experienced project manager with numerous American Planning Association Award Winning Plans, including a National APA award for comprehensive planning. She brings the study of futurology to clients so they can imagine positive change through the lens of a scientific and historical understanding of the world.
Q & A with Sheila
Publicly visible art creates a dialogue with other artists, residents, visitors, local leaders, and business owners. Art makes us feel something. It communicates the spectrum of emotions. My favorite type of public art teaches those who interact with it something about their community or themselves. It creates a conversation and builds connections.
I’ve always loved interacting with art and good design but never took the time to learn how to make it. I’m an outdoorsy sporty gal. Several years ago, I attended a funeral and was inspired to find life’s optimal experiences. I thought I would try making art. I find that the experience of making art genuinely satisfying. It puts me into a state of consciousness called flow. During flow, people typically experience deep enjoyment, creativity, and a total involvement with life. In art, there is no right or wrong. If it isn’t what you want to create, you can start over. To me, the act of making art is more important than the product – just like life.
I purchased the Historic Voigts Building in Downtown Overland Park because I wanted to be part of a cultural arts community. Our office has a fun, creative vibe with lots of art for staff to enjoy. The art helps us develop nonlinear and visual ways of thinking more creatively. Art can be a venue for dealing with complexities of life – it can build a bridge between diverse cultures and experiences. That is what our consultant firm does on the daily so hosting an art gallery seemed like a perfect extension of our work at Shockey. The 80 Santa Fe Art Gallery completes my vision of an inviting, flexible space that serves our thriving community. Besides, people are always stopping and looking inside trying to figure out what we do in our space. I’m excited to celebrate local artists and invite them inside.
Keith is the curator of 80 Santa Fe, as well as being a photographer and ceramic artist.
He’s been criss-crossing State Line for much of his life, growing up in Springfield, Missouri, with an English professor and amateur photographer as a father and a bohemian painter, sculptor and ceramic artist as a mother.
He got his start in photography at an early age when his parents got him an Instamatic to document the epic driving trip the family took when moving from Seattle to Missouri. He breathed Dektol fumes in an unventilated home darkroom as a teenager and went on to study photojournalism at the University of Missouri.
His first professional stint was at the Topeka Capitol Journal, where he spent five years on the photo staff and more importantly, met his future wife Nancy. The young couple temporarily broke the I-70 curse and spent a year in Venezuela, where they worked for the Caracas Daily Journal and other publications. In the years since then, they’ve lived in St. Louis, Columbia (a MA in journalism for Keith), and Kansas City, having four wonderful children in various hospitals along the highway and careers in public relations and communications.
About six years ago, Keith scratched a life-long itch and began taking classes at the Kansas City Clay Guild, growing increasingly serious about the craft of ceramics. With aspirations for decorating his pottery that were greater than his design skills, Keith decided to bring something he was good at - photography - into his ceramic art. His recent work is the result of his experiments along several themes combining pottery and photography. 2022 brought another opportunity, as Keith stepped in as curator of the 80 Santa Fe Art Gallery and has been privileged to start meeting local artists and getting to better know the thriving Kansas City area arts scene.