Archive for the ‘Art Fair News’ Category

The St. James Court Art Show in Louisville Report

October 6, 2008
St. James Court by mister_poppular

St. James Court by mister_poppular

Didn’t make it to Louisville this past weekend, October 3-5? Maybe you’ll want to be there next year for the St. James Court Art Show and its satellite shows on 3rd Street, 4th Street and Belgravia Court. They tout 700 artists and around 300,000 visitors in this beautiful, leafy old neighborhood full of historic homes. It is a lovely place to spend a fall day, see and be seen, eat Kentucky burgoo and discover treasures.

Here are reviews to pique your interest:

A site with many images, including the one above:

Another site that has wonderful images of the unique architecture of the neighborhood (enough to bring you to the district again to see it without the crowds), This man needs to be on the Chamber of Commerce for the city.

St. James Court Art Show Ends Sunday
WLKY – Louisville,KY,USA
Perfect weather has made for a comfortable stroll for visitors of the St. James Court Art Show. Some of the finest artists and craftsmen in the country came … read the story and see the video.

From the Louisville Courier-Journal: St. James art show: It’s a scene.

See you there next year?


Art Fair Artist Mary Jackson Becomes MacArthur “Genius”

October 2, 2008

Mary Jackson Preserves Tradition

Readers of this newsletter already know that the artists they meet at art fairs are extremely talented people who push the boundaries of their medium and continue to draw you to art fairs to examine their creativity.

It is with great pleasure to learn that one of our own, fiber artist Mary Jackson, has been chosen by the MacArthur Foundation to receive a $500,000 ‘no strings attached’ grant for her “intricately coiled vessels that preserve the centuries-old craft of sweetgrass basketry and push the tradition in stunning new directions.”

Others named as MacArthur Fellows include a violinist, an anthropologist, a music critic, a stage lighting designer and several types of physicians and scientists.

This is a link to an excellent story about Mary Jackson and her art in Crafts Report.

Learn more about the MacArthur Foundation at their website:

Congratulations, Mary! Sure hope we’ll still see you at some art fairs.

Overcoming Economic Obstacles for Festival Success

September 22, 2008

When it looked as though the Fayetteville, AR, Arts Festival wasn’t going to happen because of slashes to the budget the Fayetteville Downtown Partners came together to make it happen AND they had money to put toward next year. Congratulations to you!

Read this great story at:

For more of the details of how this group made this happen read this also:

Hanna Causes Cancellation – No Refund to Artists

September 15, 2008

The News Journal – Wilmington,DE,USA
By DAN SHORTRIDGE • The News Journal • September 13, 2008 Some Delaware artists are up in arms after a popular arts festival was canceled last weekend in Bethany Beach and the Chamber of Commerce (host of the event) did not refund fees or make other arrangements such a a rain date or application of the fees to next year’s festival.

Read the rest of the story:

What do YOU think? Should they refund?

Here is your chance to share your opinion. I have just built a new forum for artists to share their information. You can be one of the first to join in before I issue the invitations to a specially selected group. Visit now and let’s continue the discussion.

Michigan Festival: Art, Food & Music at its Best

September 4, 2008
Arts, Beats & Eats

Arts, Beats & Eats

Now it is Wednesday. I had intended to blog each day about Arts, Beats & Eats, but life and the job got in the way.

Saturday night ended late for me. After the streets were clear and all the artists closed up there was some office work to do then I headed back to my hotel to meet old friends Allan Teger and Chris Maher in the bar for a drink. We settled up the art fair business fast and then discussed the various ways to use the Internet to connect artists and patrons. They want to make a community out of the patrons who love art fairs, holding meetings during the fairs where the patrons can meet each other. This is taking social networking real. Would this be of interest to any of you?

Photographer Ed Holland at Arts, Beats & Eats

Photographer Ed Holland at Arts, Beats & Eats

Sunday morning was time to hustle again. We host an artists award breakfast at the Lafayette Grande and it is always well attended. Lisa and I really enjoy talking with the artists away from their booths and seeing everyone relaxing for a little while. Then we have an awards presentation and pass out the checks and the ribbons. Jon Witz, the producer of Arts, Beats & Eats, attends and always gives a heads up on his plans for the future of the event.

Next year we will be closing earlier. Radio stations that cater to young people will not be part of the lineup and the carnival will be gone. These changes are going to be made to make it more comfortable for an older crowd to attend in the evening.

There are six stages at our event and the people who attend the art fair somewhat reflect the acts for the day. In the art area there is an acoustical stage which always draws a mellow crowd. The headliner for the whole weekend (as far as I was concerned) was Chaka Khan on stage at 10 pm. I was able to get VIP passes for some of the artists and Svetlana and Sam Kuznets, Irina Dinkevich, Richard McCollum, Andrew Wender, Marvin Bower and some others got special seats. When the art area was closed my friend Sandy Dunstone and I got to join them there.

Richard Skelton sculpture

Richard Skelton sculpture

The speakers were so loud that you could hear Chaka all over downtown Pontiac. Other staff people just stayed in the office and they heard her as well as we did. Fun, great energy–welcome to Pontiac, Chaka.

Back to the hotel, her tour bus was already there and I rode up in the elevator with her bodyguard.

Monday is always a happy day–only six hours to go. Much buying of art happens on Monday and I caught many artists making sales (photos coming soon). At five pm artists start closing even though the streets are full of people. Many of them have put in enough time and are ready to leave. Still it was an hour until there was room to bring in the vehicles. Some complained because we were closing, but most were ready to go.

By 11 pm everyone was gone, the electricians were collecting all the cords, the scaffolds were down and the street was back to normal. In the rest of the event area (restaurant, vendor and stages) the event ends at 8 pm. All night long the crews are removing tents, propane tanks, grease barrels, stages and equipment getting the streets open for Tuesday morning.

I was back in the office on Tuesday, but many of the crew worked all night. Leaving town on Tuesday afternoon (after cleaning up the files, making an invitational list for next year, writing letters to the artists, etc.) there were just a few large tents left in the parking lot and the carnival was doing its final loading.

It was a great weekend for me seeing so many old friends, including Scott Coleman who we met at our very first art fair, and meeting three people who I have featured as Artist of the Month: Debra Groat, Steve Uren and James Parker. Greetings go out also to jeweler Liz Kain and her friend Louise, subscribers and readers from Toronto, participating for the first time.

Many thanks to everyone who makes these events what they are: special.

Collette Fortin of Neptune Hot Glass

Collette Fortin of Neptune Hot Glass

More stories on this popular festival:

Arts, Beats and Eats festival offers food and fun
Detroit Free Press – United States
Wilson’s art, as well as other pieces at the festival, could be bought from as little as $10 to thousands of dollars. Bands and radio stations playing their …

Folks take to blogging, green theme at AB&E
Detroit Free Press – United States
“This is the first time I’ve seen laptops at any type of festival,” said Reema Gupta, 23, of Sterling Heights. “Usually they sell art and we eat, …

Police Presence Cancels Nude Photo Shoot at Art Fair

July 19, 2008

Here are five interesting articles I found about the Ann Arbor Art Fair:

1. Police Presence Cancels Nude Photo Shoot
WDIV – Detroit, MI, USA
A warning from police deterred people to take part in a scheduled nude photo shoot at the Ann Arbor Art Fair on Friday. Harvey Drouillard has taken nude …

Here is a series of interviews with artists that is informational if you’ve ever wondered how

Colette Fortin at Neptune Hot Glass
Colette Fortin at Neptune Hot Glass

the artists feel about the art fair:

2. Is it worth it? Artists weigh in on the Ann Arbor Art Fairs
The Ann Arbor News – – Ann Arbor, MI, USA
The Guild Summer Art Fair, Booth D268. 1. It was $700 for the booth; $150 for gas and parking. We stay at home and bring our own food, so that helps. 2. …

Here is an essay around a single topic:

Dolls by Sharon Snoeyink

Dolls by Sharon Snoeyink

3. Art Fair Dolls
By Mae Travels (Mae Travels)
Many artists at the Ann Arbor Art Fair make dolls for collectors. Some dolls are more like statues, but many of them are soft dolls with clothing made of cloth. I think that lots of grown ups and also children really love dolls of all ….

I agree with Mae, especially the dolls of Sharon Snoeyink, they have a fairy tale quality with no detail unembellished.

4. What we bought at the Art Fair
By Mae Travels(Mae Travels)
Our Art Fair purchases included two ceramic items. We were very impressed by this booth of potter Adam Spector: We selected this plate: For several years, we’ve been very fond of the pottery made by Marvin Blackmore, who works in a …

I know the work of Marvin, absolutely gallery quality, every piece unusual and fine.

Here is a nice blog with good images, including chatter about my friend Kathleen Eaton and her paintings. It is a pleasure to report she told me all her large paintings had been sold before she even arrived at Ann Arbor.

5.  Ann Arbor Art Fair
By Minick & Simpson (Minick & Simpson)
Not the Art Fair itself, but what it does to our daily existence here. It screws it up plenty, that’s what it does – but it’s worth it. I spent this morning walking around and thought I could show you a couple of pictures. …

Were you at an art fair recently, or at Ann Arbor? What did you buy? I would love to hear your comments, nothing snarky though. Post them below.

One Day Left for Ann Arbor Art Fair(s) – Be There!

July 19, 2008

Lucky me, on Thursday my friend Barb and I spent an exhilarating day in Ann Arbor shopping, visiting and eating. Here’s the story.

The easy way: drive to Briarwood Mall, off of I-94 at the State Street exit. Ride the shuttle bus to the fair, $2 roundtrip.

Easy way to get to the fair

Easy way to get to the fair

Just when you think you have seen enough art and art fairs you are deposited in this wonderful place. The Ann Arbor Street Art Fair never disappoints. We didn’t have time to see all the art, but here are some favorites.

Painting by Glenn Payne

Painting by Glenn Payne

Imagine a young person enjoying the art fair!

Imagine a young person enjoying the art fair!

Sculpture by James Eaton

Sculpture by James Eaton

Pottery by Michigan artist John Herbon

Pottery by Michigan artist John Herbon

As she walked away I heard this woman say, “that’s what I like about art fairs, the artists are so helpful and friendly.”

Painter Kathleen Eaton from the Chicago area

Painter Kathleen Eaton from the Chicago area

Sculpture by David Bryce from N. Egremont, MA

Sculpture by David Bryce from N. Egremont, MA

The Street Art Fair Plaza

The Street Art Fair Plaza

For twenty-eight years my partner, Norm Darwish, and I participated in one or another of the Ann Arbor fairs. Out of nostalgia we revisited our space:

Photography booth now occupied by Mark Mowen, leather worker

Photography booth now occupied by Mark Mowen, leather worker

It was great running into many old friends, including the sheriff himself

Sheriff James Eaton - policing the art fair being caught out by Barb

Sheriff James Eaton - policing the art fair being caught out by Barb

Great to see Joe Henderson looking well after his illness. Welcome back, Joe!

Great to see Joe Henderson looking well after his illness. Welcome back, Joe!

The happiest people of all were the shoppers, there in large numbers and carrying out all the goods.

A big sale for artist Kathy Sheldon from Wyoming, MI

This shopper needs a few more hands

Looks like it was a good day for artist Kathy Sheldon from Wyoming, MI–two big pieces left the fair as I was walking along (above and below).

Happy and looking for more

Happy and looking for more

Heading home

Heading home

Getting a hug from dear old friend David Bigelow from Ozark, MO

Getting a hug from dear old friend David Bigelow from Ozark, MO

Very happy shoppers fill the shuttle with their purchases and promise to return next year

Very happy shoppers fill the shuttle with their purchases and promise to return next year

The Good News from Michigan! Tidings of Beauty and Joy and Fun

July 16, 2008
Art fair buyers

Shopping the fair

The press and the public love the Ann Arbor Art Fair. If you can’t make it here are some of the stories about the event:

Here’s a cool place where you can share your art fair finds online. Have a tip about a cool artist you’ve discovered, a great deal at a sidewalk sale or a street-food vendor that’s not to be missed? Visit here at You can share photos too, an interactive art fair.

Haven’t decided whether or not to show up in Ann Arbor this week? This article from the Detroit Free Press: Ten Things Not to Miss at the Ann Arbor Art Fair, should help you decide or give you the opportunity to be up on the best of the art fair vicariously.

Want one of the funky choices? Some locals really get into the act. Here is an “artistic” yard sale to visit: Art Fair at Heavenly Metal, where you’ll find recycled metal, artwork and more.

And don’t miss The Funnel Cake Guy – my art fair story by Food Dude.

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Ann Arbor Art Fairs 101: Intro to Art Fair Attending

July 15, 2008

July 16-19
Ann Arbor, MI

Michigan Art Fair

Let the buying begin!

The Ann Arbor Art Fairs
Wed.-Fri. 10 am-9 pm; Sat. 10 am-6 pm
1000+ juried artists

In case you didn’t know it, starting Wednesday Ann Arbor, MI, turns into art fair city with four official art fairs throughout the downtown and on the U-M campus. Here are the links that tell the rest of the story:

We’ll start with:

1. Getting Downtown during the Art Fairs, plus a story about commuting during the fairs with its own website.

2. Oh, and of course, any event worth its salt has its own preview party. Tonight attend the Ann Arbor Fair Townie Street Party, from 5 to 9:30 p.m., at a new location under the big tents on North University Avenue in front of Hill Auditorium and around the fountain on Ingalls Mall.

Artist Chuck Wimmer with customer at the art fair

Artist Chuck Wimmer with customer at the art fair

3. For a great preview/overview, with lots of useful detail read the blog at The writer talked with Shary Brown from the Ann Arbor Street Art Fair, who always has the best info. “You may have been looking forward to this moment since last year. Or you may have been dreading it. Either way, brace yourself.”

4. A nice view of the fairs from the University of Michigan Daily gives some more details on what to expect,  “art fair” may call to mind kitschy wooden dolls or intricately bent wire sculptures – more an excuse to spend cash on “summer collectibles” … Read Ben VanWagoner’s report at The Michigan Daily.

5. For a look at the economic impact of the event read: Ann Arbor Art Fairs “economic engine” revs up.

6. Here is a story I found in the Cleveland Plain Dealer. There are always busloads of shoppers from Cleveland who love the art fair. How fun to ride to and from the fair with friends, plus the great “show and tell” on the way home!

7. And here’s the story from the Grand Rapids Press. It is well written with lots of good detail differentiating the various art fairs. Very helpful to newbies.

Selling blown glass at the art fair

Selling blown glass at the art fair

8. If you are a regular reader of this blog you know it has been a “weather-challenged” year for the artists. You might enjoy reading this story in the Ann Arbor News:

It’s almost time for the Ann Arbor Art Fairs – and organizers are ready for all kinds of weather

9. And yes, you will also find an alternative art fair in Ypsilanti on Saturday: The Shadow Art Fair. The Shadow Art Fair began two years ago as a warm-up for the Ann Arbor Art Fairs and to bring Ypsilanti area artists together.

Is there anything I’ve missed? This site has all the answers in one place:

Were We in Kansas, Toto? Video from Chicago

July 2, 2008

This should be the last report on last weekend’s storms. I’m attaching a video from Chicago from the Evanston Fountain Square Art Fair to get an even better idea about the damage.

This spring we sold our display panels to Barbara Baur who was going out to start her art fair career this year. She has been through two terrible storms so far, including being trapped in her booth through the Evanston storm and having her booth collapse around her and the neighbor’s booth falling on top of her!! See comments in the previous story.

Nonetheless, she tells me the panels are ready to go to Madison (WI) soon and she is ready to “get back on the horse.”

Here’s the video from the Chicago Tribune:…val/4211411604

A great title for a blog entry: Kansas at the Art Fair
By Nancy Heiser
“We played and involuntary game of the Wizard of Oz at the show in Cedarburg on Saturday. The wind took the booth and destroyed a lot of stuff. The tent tried to do a somersault and only made it 3/4ths of the way over before breaking …”St. Clair Art Fair

And here is something I always like to see, a good example of how to attend an art fair when it is raining.

At least nothing was blowing and breaking at the St. Clair Art Fair in St. Clair, MI. Find out what you missed:

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