2013 Stillwater Arts Festival (review) – “No Country For Old Wind”

new : carpet and bigger print bins!

Since it’s the hometown show, and my first show of the season, this is where I work out all the kinks. It’s where I’m reminded to wear sunscreen, drink more water, take better inventory of my prints, pack a lunch, bring more duct tape, bring more plastic bags, and generally get back into the swing of things.

Setup

Art festivals have taught me
how to drive in narrow spaces.

Friday afternoon is set-up day. Drive up close, check in at the info booth, get the packet of goodies, and ask “how do I get in to unload?” There’s always some secret door that is invisible to the general public, but it’s a main entrance for letting artists in. Let’s just say that art festivals have taught me how to drive in narrow spaces. I have to drive down the show itself, around other booths, trying to avoid snagging an errant print bin or something.

It’s windy. I don’t have some way to ‘put it’. That’s the way it is.

Wind is a universal cosmic fact of art festivals. It will happen. Part (or all) of someone’s display will get blown over. You just have to be ready to make sure it isn’t yours.

Since the disaster at Utica several years ago, I have been ready for it. In fact, while the wind was rattling through, I described to some visitors the support system I employed to hold the booth together, “Don’t worry, this booth isn’t going anywhere. I had my own disaster a few years ago…” CRASH! Part of someone’s display collapsed a few booths away, and without skipping a beat in my story, “…and it went just like that!”

Overall


I would have been disappointed if this was Mayfest or Paseo, but for being the Stillwater show, sales were pretty good.

The layout was better, and the show was smaller: Down from 127 booths to 99, and there were no artists shunted away on the side streets! Having fewer artists is more appropriate for this town. Stillwater simply doesn’t have the market to keep over 100 artists happy.

As always, I chatted up with my neighbors, got to know a few new artists, and even used part of the show to catch up with fellow artists — John Kennington said he got a great deal on an Epson wide format printer (way to go, dude!), Liv and Ron Colbert are displaying their new line of “Fusion Art” (a marriage of painting and photography in the same piece of work, with a very striking appearance! By keeping their media separate up until now, they would occasionally apply to a show where only one of them would get juried in. This should fix that.)

Quotes from the show

  • “The sun makes it look real!”
  • (A six-year-old kid who just got out of church, pointing out my “Into Upright” photo to his mother) “That’s God’s light! Look, that’s God’s light! …No wait, that doesn’t look like God’s light. How can it be real?”
This entry was posted in Art Festival Reviews.