Oklahoma City Festival Kicks Out Importer


The Festival of the Arts in Oklahoma City is a BIG event, brought to the community by the Arts Council of Oklahoma City for six days every year at the end of April. It is highly regarded by artists for the quality of the patrons and the wonderful organization. So, everyone was surprised last week when it was discovered that a person, posing as an artist, was found in the midst of the fair, selling Chinese paper-cuttings purchased on the Internet.

Paper-cutting is a traditional art in China and there are a few wonderful Asian artists like Lou Hii, a native of Hong Kong, living and creating in Indianapolis, IN, who astonish the public with their fine work.

“Nine Lucky Koi”, paper cutting by artist Lou Hii

But this time an imposter importer appeared at Oklahoma City. How did they find him? Here is a report from Sally Bright (fiber artist from Fenton, MI) on the NAIA Forum:

Friday, the 4th day of the 6 day show, someone bought a couple pieces of this stuff. At home they checked the internet and found the exact designs they paid $68 for listed for $14. Saturday morning they brought the website information to the show, asked for their money back and got it.

Someone from the show started calling wait-listed, local artists. Someone else took a couple “of BIG burley men” over to the booth, dropped the front tarp of the show-owned tent without saying a thing, and then told the guy to get out! He just shrugged his shoulders. Show staff helped remove the items immediately. And another artist was set up within 2 hours of the tarp drop.

Later I talked with Peter Dolese, director of the show. On behalf of real artists working so hard to make a living in this realm I thanked him for enforcing the show’s rules. The show’s lawyer is studying the contract before they take further action with this guy. They will at least contact all buyers (if possible) to explain what happened and return their money if desired. Since this is a commission show, the importer guy had not been paid as of Sunday night.


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