If the poster of a cat wearing cowboy boots on a carousel horse is not enough to persuade you to attend Cherrywood Art Fair, then perhaps the local art, live music and food vendors will convince you.
In its 13th year of offering family friendly activities, the Cherrywood Art Fair boasts over 80 artists and makers selling and exhibiting their work, 12 live music acts on an outdoor stage and many of Austin’s best food trucks.
The fair is produced by the Chula League, an East Austin non-profit that supports the arts, art education and beautifying outdoor spaces.
The Cherrywood Art Fair takes place at charming Maplewood Elementary, an historic, mid-century school located in East Austin at 38th and Maplewood. Many of the fair’s young volunteers attended school there and participated in Chula League’s Little Artist BIG ARTIST Program, which pairs professional artists and elementary school kids for a 10 week art mentoring program.
The Cherrywood Art Fair has a lot of of talented participants and staff. Producer Pati Shampton notes that it’s “so heartwarming to be around such great people.” I spoke with a few of the exhibiting artists to provide a taste of what this year’s fair has to offer.
Fine Art – Carly Weaver
Why does Carly Weaver paint grackles? “I was sick of battling them in my backyard: pooping on the deck, eating my dog’s food, and generally being a nuisance.” Despite her disdain for the grackle, Carly Weaver decided to “embrace the pest” by photographing them in various poses and recreating the images on wood with oil paints.
Hundreds of paintings later, she reports that the birds no longer visit her often “due to either good karma or the hawks that have swooped in.”
Continuing the nature theme, Carly draws West Texas landscapes and also has a series of bicycle drawings. The latter are all depictions of bikes she has seen outside in East Austin. She hopes someone will recognize their own bike from her work and still loves to spot the bikes in motion on the streets of Austin that unknowingly have become the stars of her work.
Carly will have several of her grackle oil paintings, West Texas charcoal and enamel drawings, bicycle graphite and color pencil drawings, and smaller reproductions of her grackles and bicycles available at Cherrywood Art Fair. She shares a booth with her husband, Matt of Squidrabbit Artz, who creates whimsical prints of curious creatures and landscapes.
3D Art – Pendulum and Pen Ink
Stan Slater has been running Pendulum and Pen Ink for the past six years. He knew he wanted to work with wood since the age of 8 when he visited his grandfather’s wood shop and watched the creation of bass fishing lures. Now, Stan creates objects on a similar scale from exotic and domestic hardwoods and bright acrylics.
Stan’s pens are beautiful, high quality pieces, and he also crafts styluses for tablets and smartphones. If you are looking for a unique gift, you’ll also find perfume applicators and pendulums. His wooden pendulums are used by healers and dowsers all over the world. “I am both honored and humbled that something I make with my hands is used in the hands of people to heal themselves and others, and to find the answers they need from dowsing. It is a gift that keeps on giving for me.”
Stan will have a variety of these objects available at Cherrywood Art Fair.
Ceramics – Bluehaven Porcelain
Clare and Mark, a couple who has worked together for over 20 years, make up Bluehaven Porcelain. They both build the molds for their ceramic kitchenware and vessels. From there, they each fulfill the parts of the process they’re best suited for. Mark does the wheelthrowing and hand building while Clare does the kiln firing, glazing and hand painting.
Clare notes, “We collaborate with each other throughout the process, but many times the pieces take on a life of their own and come out completely different than what we were aiming for – usually in a good way!”
Bluehaven Porcelain will have an assortment of pieces available, including dinnerware, lamps and vessels. All of their pieces are unique and aim to fit a variety of budgets.
Jewelry – Cori Wilbanks
Cori Wilbanks cites nature as the main source of inspiration for her jewelry. “I studied biology years ago and continue to be fascinated by nature’s architecture. I can’t go on a walk without picking up twigs and seed pods that catch my eye.”
Working mainly in silver, iron and bronze, Cori varies her process depending on the piece. She fabricates, forges and lost wax casts her work while recalling the Art Deco, Art Nouveau and Arts and Crafts eras.
Some very unique pieces of hers are “postcard rings.” These rings were created as a response to the landscapes she saw on a cross-country road trip. Cori will have a few postcard rings available at Cherrywood Art Fair, along with Art Deco-inspired pieces and – of course – nature-inspired jewelry.
Meet You at the Fair
There are so many more wonderful artists and I wish I could include them all! But luckily, you can meet them all on December 13th and 14th from 10-5 PM at Maplewood Elementary (3808 Maplewood Ave). Admission is free.
Thanks to the Chula League, Cherrywood Art Fair promises family oriented fun with great holiday gifts. See you at the fair!
@madameklm wants to know:
Who do you buy art for during the holidays?