Arts on the Avenue a great mix of art, fun

The featured artist at this year’s AOA will be carver Jack Fisher.

Arts on the Avenue a great mix of art, fun

If you build it, they will come.

No matter how many times that’s been proven during the 17 year history of Ladysmith’s Arts on the Avenue, Kathy Holmes and the organizing committee still get butterflies as the big day approaches.

This Aug. 23 there will be 56 juried artists in the show, including: potters, fine artists, jewelry makers, metal craftsmen, woodworkers, glass blowers, fabric artists and photographers.

They will be demonstrating their creations, and their techniques before an estimated 6,000 art aficionados in about 30 tents between Buller and Warren streets from 10 a.m to 4 p.m.

“We cover all the mediums, we try to get a good mix,” Holmes said, adding that Ladysmith will live up to its reputation as a place where great art happens.

“We do have wonderful artists here,” she said. “It’s a mecca for the arts.” That’s true of Vancouver Island in general, she added. “I think Vancouver Island and the Gulf Islands have a high quality and high proportion of artists.”

The featured artist at this year’s AOA will be carver Jack Fisher. “His work is in homes all over the world,” Holmes said, adding he’s been a big supporter of Arts on the Avenue since its inception.

There will be lots of opportunities for kids to participate, making Arts on the Avenue a family event. Cheeky Monkey Daycare will be running a Kids’ Art Area, where there they can “come in and paint and create all day long.

As well potter Mary Fox will be showing youngsters the art of working with clay.

Demos for all ages will be happening throughout the day, including: rug hooking, pottery, printmaking and painting. On the street there will be busking and music making, to keep things up-tempo.

“It’s not just an art show and art sale, it’s a community activity too,” Holmes said, expressing the Arts Council’s gratitude for the businesses and volunteers, who get behind the AOA each year.

But it’s mostly about the artists, and it’s a great opportunity for Ladysmith to show its support. “You’re buying right from the artists; you’re supporting the artist,” she said.

You will also be getting original, juried art at a very significantly reduced price. Don’t miss out.