"But what I really want to do is direct."

You hear actors say this all the time. So much so that it's become cliché.

Matthew Cirello, owner of North Park's Cirello Gallery (3803 Ray St.) started as a director, so to speak. Then he fell into acting, and then set design, and then somehow became the key grip who didn't get a chance to set foot behind the camera as much as he used to. So now he's going back to his original passion. 

The gallery is where Cirello and his partner, Jasmine Lee, created, displayed and sold their metal sculpture and jewelry. But as any gallery owner can tell you, the business side of things can affect one's creative side.

This is why Cirello and Lee have decided to rent out the front half of their space to other artists and will focus on making their art in their private metalsmithing studio. Cirello Gallery will now be called Cirello Metalsmith.

"We need more time to be creative," he says. "We've been doing a lot of administration and working with other artists. It's been lots of fun, but it's time for us to focus on our jewelry."

That need to zero in on their main calling is especially important now that their jewelry will be sold in the Smithsonian gift shop. Cirello and Lee want to spend their time making new pieces instead of worrying about the day-to-day business of running a gallery.

They've already rented out 400 square feet of the space to Brandon Hubbard and are looking for another artist to take over the other 400 square feet. Cirello says the space can be used as a private gallery, studio or for retail.

Cirello and Lee will still sell and showcase their work at every Ray at Night, unveiling anything new they've made.

"We're really excited," Cirello says. "It's something we've been thinking about for a year now. It's going to relieve a lot of stress and pressure off our shoulders."

"It is scary," he adds. "It's a big change, but we're looking at it in a positive way."

Write to alexz@sdcitybeat.com. You can also bug her on Twitter.


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