Original published by the Portage County Gazette
Albert Einstein once said, “Creativity is contagious. Pass it on.”
That is precisely what organizers and artists said they hope to accomplish with the 44th annual Festival of the Arts next month.
The 44th annual Festival of the Arts will run from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday, April 3, at the Noel Fine Arts (NFAC) Building at University of Wisconsin Stevens Point (UWSP). Admission is free.
“It’s a fun experience to be around the artists and the community,” said Karin Sieg, a Stevens Point artist who will show in the graphics and printmaking category. “You really get inspired.”
Visitors will see high-quality art forms in a myriad of mediums presented by about 50 professional artists from Wisconsin, Illinois, Iowa, Minnesota and Michigan. A dozen of the artists are local, hailing from Portage, Wood and Clark counties.
The festival not only shows work available for purchase, but provides an opportunity to talk with the artists, learn about their techniques and inspiration.
“The Festival of the Arts provides a wonderful opportunity for area residents to see and purchase high-quality work created by artists in the upper Midwest,” said Lora Hagen, Stevens Point. “As a local artist, I’m happy to have the ability to meet and talk to more people who are interested in what all of us do.”
The atrium and second-floor mezzanine of the NFAC will be filled with glass, jewelry, fiber, drawing, painting, graphics and prints, photography, ceramics, sculptures and wood.
Again this year, UWSP art professor Dianne Bywaters will have art activities for children.
“It’s going to be a great show,” said John Morser, a local photographer who has shown pieces in the festival in the past.
While there is a great source of talent to draw from with the university, organizers have been working diligently to broaden the show, said Morser, a member of the Festival of the Arts Council. Some success has come, he said, as artists from two more states will display work this year.
There also will be a silent auction that includes at least one piece from most of the artists in the show, he said, with the proceeds in part going toward awards for UWSP students enrolled in the arts department.
Award winners this year include Jacob Peichuan, graphic arts; Brooke Newman, studio arts; Natalie Trumm, music. The award in dance was not available at press time.
Winning pieces from the Emerging Artists collection recently on display at the Riverfront Arts Center also will be on hand at the festival to help introduce younger artists in the community: Gonzealo Bonelli, Madison Jahn, Rachel Kawleski, Natalie Khang, Jenna Menadue, Holly Meyer, Kiya Singewald and Mara Steinweber.
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