Betony Coons · The Art Studio

Introducing Betony Coons

Zip lines from the second floor to the front door, an elaborate, hand-painted theater in the living room, tree houses dotting the apple orchard landscape… No, this isn’t The Lost Boys lair. It was the childhood home of artist-in-residence, Betony Coons.

betony tree house
Wonders and Ladders
Betony Coons

“My own upbringing was very whimsical.” You can say that again.

So it isn’t surprising she was intrigued by the opportunity to take up residency at the Children’s Museum; “My art is very kid-inspired. I have four children of my own, and we are always creating together.”

Art appears to be innate to every part of her life. She and her husband, musician Tim Coons, create together under the name Giants and Pilgrims. Their collaboration focuses on combining their art forms. On a recent tour, Betony painted live on-stage while Tim performed.

“We give each other a lot of feedback. It’s like having a brutally honest mirror.”

As an artist, Betony is drawn to mixed-media; “I’ve always liked to dabble, to play with a lot of different stuff. Mixed-media collage allows me to do a tiny bit of everything. It’s my way of pulling in all these bits and pieces of all the little stuff I like to do.”

During her open studio hours, guests can expect to be surprised with something new every time. For Betony, a favorite moment so far was the day before the solar eclipse crossed the U.S. On a whim, she decided to switch up her plan and instead have the kids create celestial works using paints and gold leaf. One family, originally from France, had traveled from Michigan to view the total eclipse in Wyoming, but stopped on the way for a day trip in Denver. The father shared their story with Betony, and was overjoyed to have such a perfect memento to commemorate their trip.

“Connecting with this family from the other side of the world, it just felt really special and purposeful.”

Betony has open studio hours now through October. Visit our website for more details.

The Art Studio

Introducing Salim

Salim Khoury started with the Museum as a Clay Technician in October 2015. Recently, he took on the role of Art Studio Coordinator and has strived to expand the experiences available to Museum guests. In addition to adding new clay programming, he has been working hard to bring wonder and joy to all through pop-up dance parties (James Brown, anyone?), “stained” glass windows and every child’s favorite, coloring on walls.

Check out this video to meet Salim and hear more about the variety of ways you can play with clay at the Children’s Museum!