Artizan is owned and operated by Clayton King and Jeffery Schwalk who have called Columbia home for five years. Both are originally from Texas and lived in Austin, that state’s capital, for 25 years before South Carolina’s capital city called. Artizan originally opened its doors in summer 2011, and the newly expanded space was completed May 1.
While both men have held executive and management positions in the high tech and travel industries, their training in fine art and theater have served them well in putting together and promoting the Artizan collection. In addition, Jeffery has managed high-end jewelry stores in Austin, and he brings that knowledge to Artizan.
With its emphasis on the American Craft movement, the collection is comprised of local, regional, and national artists. The jewelry offerings at Artizan range from karat gold and diamond pieces, to artisan-made creations in a variety of materials. Because of this, the gallery’s tagline “nothing ordinary here” is the measure by which each and every piece is considered. With the newly expanded space at 1217 Bull St., women’s accessories, including handbags, scarves and hats, will be offered. In addition, there are plans for artist showings and small events in the space.
Artizan is also highly involved with the community and actively supports the Columbia City Ballet, USC Dance Program, Children’s Chance, AIDS Benefit Foundation, South Carolina Equality and more. “We believe in supporting the community that supports us,” says Clayton. “To be in a community, we must be part of the community.”