The words "gentle giant" come to mind when you first see Lee Pepper, the owner and head masseuse at Artifex Manuum Spa and Gallery in residential Uptown. Bearded and burly with a shaved head and huge hands, Pepper has a precise and firm approach to massage that is not for clients who just want a few squeezes, a dash of aromatherapy, and nature music. While Artifex doesn't lack the last two elements, Pepper's massive mitts will leave you feeling like a pile of putty on the table, a state not easily achieved for those living with persistent trigger points. Beyond massage, Reiki energy work, and the royal treatment that is essential oils-based raindrop therapy, this charming stress-relief haven also offers an ever-changing gallery of local artistry, from paintings to jewelry, should you be feeling inspired after your massage. Plus, there's a good chance you'll leave your appointment with a few of Lee's valuable healthy cooking and relaxation tips, because as any good masseuse will tell you, "Everything is connected."