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How Our Round Top, Texas, Gallery Came to Be.

Humble Donkey External Image

Ever wonder how our lively little off-the-beaten-path gallery found its way to Round Top, Texas? (Not gonna lie — sometimes we do, too!) The adventure began when John and Laurie Lowery purchased a former dairy farm in nearby Burton. City slickers who didn’t know a thing about livestock — but who’d grown tired of Houston’s big-city hustle and bustle — they decided to split their time between Houston and their new digs, buy some farm equipment and see what small-town serenity was all about.

John painting

Of course, old habits die hard. And for John, a life-long artist, advertising guru and former NASA illustrator, art was a really, really old habit. In 2016 he decided to pick up his paint brush and put his own spin on the animals, rusted-out tractors and other stuff that called the region home — and sell it out of his very own gallery. (As for Laurie? She’s a very patient woman.) Humble Donkey Studio began in a tiny cabin on Henkel Square, then moved into a larger space on that same square — and eventually added on to that building. (What can we say? Size matters.) The introduction of Laurie’s Lower40 Found Objects a few years after that initial opening was what cemented the ever-growing store into the one you know and love.

John and Laurie

Today, John and Laurie fill their time curating and creating fun new items that give shoppers the chance to own a little bit of Round Top, Texas. They now call Burton their full-time home, and they’re all in on that small-town life. But can we let ya in on a little secret? They still know zilch about cows.