I've been trying to expand my horizons this summer and actually look around at art festivals rather than use them as an excuse to drink wine and stuff my face. After this past weekend's Lakeview East Festival of the Arts I realized that I'm actually starting to get to know some of Chicago's artists...and I'm a big fan! Granted, I don't have the money to re-do my apartment in custom pieces (hello, Target Home Collection), but I can still have my favorites. There aren't many summer festivals left to browse through, so here are four Chicago artists you should check out on the off-season:
This is by far my favorite of the art fair. An Anastasia Mak painting was actually this year's poster, and while I thought it was kind of nifty, I really fell in love with the pieces displayed at her booth. The paintings are made in the contemporary impressionism style featuring world destinations. Of course, I think the Chicago ones are the best. I bought this one in a small print for my desk at work.
I've been a fan of Rossana Reformado's works ever since I saw the very cool Chicago coasters in her etsy store. I didn't pay any attention to the prints until I saw them displayed at the art festival. I truly plan to get one of these. Reformado creates these Polaroid SX-70 manipulations using technology that I don't really understand, but the end result makes it look more like a painting than a photograph.
There are so many glassware vendors at these art festivals that I tend to walk right by. But a beautiful blue bowl at the Heartfire Studios booth caught my eye, and I realized that not only are their pieces beautiful and not stuffy, but they're also affordable! Unfortunately the website doesn't do the studio justice. They have many more pieces, and you absolutely have to see them in person.
Eric Nye Fine Art
I really shouldn't be allowed to touch things at art fairs. I definitely dropped a few items and almost fell into a shelf of glass vases. But you have to touch Eric Nye's pieces. It's not so much that the actual painting is spectacular (although it's not like I could do it); it's the fact that each of the pieces rotates to produce a new image every time. There are endless combinations, so you'll never have the same look twice. And since it's built to last, feel free to spin away.