Art festival comes to Colonial Brookwood Village

By MADOLINE MARKHAM

On May 14 and 15, artists will set up displays of jewelry, representational art, and more both outside and inside Colonial Brookwood Village as part of the first The Village Art Festival, sponsored by Birmingham Art Association (BAA) and Brookwood Mall. The event is free and open to the public.

The festival will run 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. daily, with chef demonstrations 12-2 p.m. and children’s art projects 2-4 p.m. The event will go on rain or shine.

“We hope to create access to broad array of arts experiences through the event,” show co-chair and BAA member Frank Holden said, noting that the organization anticipates it will become an annual festival.

“We hope it will be as important to Homewood, Mountain Brook and Vestavia as ArtWalk is for downtown,” Holden said. “We are excited about that prospect.”
All artwork, including representational art, abstract art and handmade jewelry, will be for sale; prices will range from around $50 to $200 or higher. “There will be something for everybody,” Holden said.

The BAA hopes the event will create another opportunity to provide local and regional artists an opportunity to show and sell artwork to the public.

“This year we hope to attract artists that have never participated in an art festival or have never shown arts, as well as established artists,” Holden said. “Next year if we participate, we would expand it and consider advertising nationally.” In future years they also hope to have exhibits that feature items besides just artwork.

“It’s great for artists because it’s less expensive than going [to a show] out of town,” BAA chairman Sam Collins said.

BAA volunteers will run free children’s art projects inside the first floor of the mall near the escalators. Each child can paint a special The Village Art Festival image on a canvas with colors of their choice and take them home as a memory of the festival.  “It’s important to expose kids to an art activity,” Holden said.

During a private artist’s reception Saturday evening, $2,000 worth of cash awards will be presented to artists after a blind jury review. The media competition categories are: ceramics, digital art, drawing, fiber, glass, graphics and print making, jewelry, metal works, mixed media, painting, photography, sculpture and wood.

The idea for the festival started when a BAA juried exhibit of more than 100 pieces at the mall last fall drew a big crowd. Afterward, the mall’s general manager, Cindi Akins, approached the organization about collaborating on the festival in the spring.

For more information on the event, visit www.birminghamartassocation.com.

Founded in 1908, the BAA is the oldest continually operating art association in the state. They hold two juried exhibits each year in addition to four more other exhibits. They meet on the third Monday of the month at 6 p.m. at the Homewood Public Library, 1721 Oxmoor Road. The next meeting is June 20. Jo Staley, a jewelry artist from Montgomery, will present a metal smithing demonstration as well as show and sell her artwork.

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