In its third year in Swarthmore, the Fine Arts and Crafts Festival fits perfectly into the Town Center. Artists and crafters line Park and Dartmouth avenues. Restaurants in the Ville and vendors at the Swarthmore Farmers Market provide spice and sustenance, and town merchants supplement the visiting artists with both unique finds and essential merchandise.
Local bands and singer-songwriters provide the soundtrack for the day from the Central Park amphitheater, beginning at 11 a.m. Artists demonstrate their work process and techniques as they create at demo booths, while children and their parents can do hands-on artmaking at tie-dye and other activity tents.
The 60 artists and artisans participating in the Fest will share and sell their work in a wide variety of materials and styles. Some are first timers; others, veterans of most of the fourteen prior Festivals presented by the Community Arts Center. Here are four; come meet the others next Saturday in Swarthmore.
Jeff Schaller, Downingtown
“I’m really excited about my new work. I found this mixed-media transfer process that gives me the ability to layer up the quirkiness of imagery. I started working on some small paintings, with the aid of glasses, and found them to be little gems to big ideas. I’m finding great joy in the freedom to explore and push forward my paintings.
“This will be my second time at the Swarthmore show. I had such a great reception the first year; I wanted to come back. It’s such a quaint town that is very supportive of the arts.”
Martha Perkins, Swarthmore
“My more recent work is inspired by the 2017 solar eclipse. I use a poured acrylic technique which results in an ethereal effect reminiscent of faraway galaxies.
“Last year I was one of the three judges that juried the event and this year I am looking forward to participating for the very first time. I also have an installation of my work at the CAC Beadazzle gallery which will be on display until October 15th.”
Kelly Nicholson, Wallingford
“As Stone Harvest Jewelry, my husband Austin Dodson and I handcraft etched brass and copper necklaces, cuff bracelets, rings, earrings and small housewares. We are excited about the FACF because we dearly love the Community Arts Center (it’s our home actually — Austin is the caretaker) and all it has to offer.
“I’ve participated a few times in FACF and always enjoy seeing friends, meeting people and sharing our jewelry with the world. It’s not easy to get the word out about your work when you are an artist in a small suburban community, so this is a great opportunity for us to get connected face to face with people.”
Maxine Shall Burkholder, Media
“I’ve been working at the Community Art Center in metals since 1985, studying with teachers there and elsewhere. I have taught there as well. Currently we have a new metals studio that is probably one of the best equipped in Delaware County and we are offering new classes and open studios.
“I will be exhibiting in the Art Center Jewelry booth with 6 other jewelers who work in the studio. Each of us have our own vision and our work is very different from one another’s. About 3 years ago, I started taking lapidary classes to learn to cut my own stones — and have become hooked on rocks and minerals – a healthy addiction! Nature is amazing in its creations. Each piece of my jewelry is inspired by the individual stone – and no two are ever alike.”