Chasing Down The Muse: Artists' panels for auction

August 19, 2010|By Cherril Doty
  • Artists Patricia O'Neil and Karen Talbot display some of the panels to be auctioned on Sunday at the Sawdust Art Festival.
Artists Patricia O'Neil and Karen Talbot display… (James Nordstrom,…)

The Story Behind … The Story Ahead. One is written, with all its bumps and scars, glories and missteps. The other, filled with hope and dreams, lies just ahead.

It has been a year now since the "behind" story began and the culmination is near. On Sunday, from 3 to 5 p.m., the Sawdust Art Festival will hold a live auction of more than 50 Collectors' Panels created by the generous artists of the festival.

The Story Behind began when the Sawdust Festival's 2010 Committee was asked to be in charge of a fundraiser. Since I am on this committee I was fortunate to be in on the adventure from the very inception. The committee had already been discussing possibilities and so I jumped at the opportunity when presented.

First, there were the questions. For what would monies raised be used? The answer was soon obvious. Art education at the festival is close to all our hearts and part of the organization's own mission statement. The committee asked the Art Education Committee to give us their top three needs on a wish list. They identified three much needed facility improvements, and we were off and running.


What form would we utilize that could include artists from the myriad fields available at the Sawdust? The two-inch deep, 12-by-32-inch "cradled" panel was decided upon. This way an artist could go vertical or horizontal and even turn the panel around to use as a "box" structure. In fact, two artists — James Koch and Terrell Anansi — used both sides of their panels.

Now, where would we get these panels and at what price? Here, we got really lucky. Generosity still abounds in this great community of ours. Ganahl Lumber donated materials and Sawdust Festival board member and artist Bruce Linder stepped up to make the panels we requested. Claude Sevigney of Hardwood Construction provided the saw and assisted in milling the wood. The Committee helped with sanding and putty applications.

Artist John Eagle painted the first panel as a visual aid for the committee's unveiling of the plan for the fundraiser. We were ready. In January of this year we offered the opportunity to Sawdust Festival artists at their yearly Presentation Day where the artists show their wares for entry into the non-juried show. The response was overwhelming, and the 20 panels were gone in a flash. Bruce was sent back to the shop with orders for more.

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