Stephanie Sokol for The Oakland Press
With more than 150 juried artists, the annual Art Birmingham Fine Art Fair will happen during Mother’s Day weekend in downtown Birmingham’s Shain Park.
Hosted by the Birmingham Bloomfield Art Center and the Guild of Artists and Artisans, works by national and local artists include paintings, ceramics, photography, jewelry, glass, wood, sculpture, mixed media, fiber and metal. The event is a fundraiser for the BBAC.
“We are so thankful to the city of Birmingham for allowing us to return to Mother’s Day weekend for Art Birmingham,” BBAC President Annie VanGelderen said. “(Art Birmingham is) a very long-standing tradition to celebrate art, downtown Birmingham and, of course, the beautiful Shain Park.”
While the BBAC promotes art education, the guild encourages art and supports local artists. One of this year’s new fair features, the Art Activities Tent, will provide children 12 and younger the opportunity to make colorful pinwheels as well as a pocketed accordion keepsake book for a mother or special person in their lives.
Art encourages children to express themselves and create, said Max Clayton, executive director of the Guild of Artists and Artisans.
“The BBAC and Guild share a common mission: keeping visual art alive and vital in the community,” Clayton said. “The Guild side of that is that our mission is to help artists make a living. That’s our commitment to our membership — that we’re going to create opportunities for them.”
Among artists, local artisans from the Oakland County area will bring their works to the art fair.
John Fitzpatrick, a Ferndale glass artist, has studied at many glass-blowing
schools, including Orrefors in Sweden. He runs a studio in downtown Ferndale.
Fitzpatrick said he has been a part of Art Birmingham for a long time, and likes the location and quality of work in comparison to other art fairs.
His glass blowing includes bowls, vases and other works, including perfume bottles and lamps.
Birmingham resident and artist Beth North has been creating jewelry for 16 years.
The owner of Beth North Designs, she does two Birmingham art fairs each summer, where she reunites with returning customers.
“I just love when people come up to me and say, I wore this and it inspired me,” North said.
North mostly likes to work with oxidized sterling silver, though she also creates trendy acrylic jewelry as well as chain-link purses. Her jewelry has been worn by
auto show models.
Lucia Lucas, a Bloomfield resident and Mexico City native, paints a variety of works.
She creates her art in oil, water color, collage and acrylic, and said her projects vary based on her mood.
A series of her collages spotlight Detroit, featuring famous people and buildings from the city, with words painted in to describe the subject.
“(Art Birmingham) is the only show I’m doing this year,” Lucas said. “Some years, I’ve done 12 shows in the summer. But I think I’m just going to stick to this show because I think the quality is good, and the people are interested in the works. It’s also close to my home and I like the park — it’s a great location.”
Events take place 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday and 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday. Visit http://theguild.org/art-fairs/art-birmingham/ for more information.
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