My Art Fair Dilemma

I go to a lot of art fairs. I don’t create artwork fast enough and in enough quantity to be viable as an exhibitor, but I appreciate those artists who can and do, so I go to all the art fairs I can.
Here’s a view from last month’s Kansas City Plaza Art Fair.
But I have a consistent, intransigent problem with art fairs. They’re too big for me.
Here’s one “arm” of the 2014 Summit Art Festival in Lee’s Summit, MO.
It’s not that I want fewer artists to be juried in! No way! I think there are many wonderful artists in our world, and I want as many as possible to have a chance to show and sell their work to the tasteful and intelligent folks who come to art fairs.
Another view of the 2014 Summit Art Festival.
It’s just that I, personally, never seem to have the time or the strength to get all the way around your average art fair without having to cruise by and give only cursory glances to many of the exhibition booths these artists have spent years, driven hundreds of miles, and plunked down thousands of dollars to bring to the fair.
Here’s part of the Prairie Village (KS) Art Fair, held in June 2014.
As an artist myself, and as a person who has friends on the art fair circuit whom I hope will prosper and make more art, that seems wrong. I know what it takes to create the work, build a unique approach, and bring an attractive exhibit to an art fair. It’s a LOT of work! It deserves respect and attention.
Another view from the 2014 Prairie Village Art Fair.
It has always frustrated me as a blogger, too. How can I possibly do justice to all of the artists whose work I admire at a given art fair, when I have a limited amount of time and space to post something before it ceases to be “timely”?
This is the 2014 Art Westport show, in Kansas City’s Westport area.
I hope I’ve finally found a way. I’m starting a new series on this blog, called “Art Fair Delights.” In each post I will feature one artist whose work I have seen at an art fair recently, and whose exhibit broke me out of “cruising by” mode so I couldn’t resist crossing the sidewalk and weaving through the crowd to look more closely.
Another view of the 2014 Prairie Village show.
I have spoken with each of these artists personally, introduced myself as a blogger, and received permission to feature their work. They all have websites or a web presence of some sort, from which I’ve obtained images of their work. My posts will include links to them, for any of my readers who want to know more.
Another view of Art Westport in 2014.
Please come along with me. Let’s cross the sidewalk, go inside the booth, and take a closer look at the work of some of these amazing, talented folk! Watch for a new “Art Fair Delight” in this blog space very soon.
IMAGE CREDIT: All of the photos in this post were taken by me at art fairs I have attended during the past 4 months.

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jansgephardt

Kansas City-based Jan S. Gephardt is a writer, artist, and teacher. She makes nationally-recognized paper sculpture and writes sf mystery novels about a sapient police dog.

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