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Downers Grove Fair features affordable art

Downers Grove Fine Arts Fair

♦ Sept. 8-9

♦ Main Street and Burlington Avenue, Downers Grove

♦ Free

♦ (847) 926-4300

Unique and functional art will be on display at the Downers Grove Fine Arts Fair.

The free art fair will be from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday in downtown Downers Grove, and will feature 105 juried artists from around the country exhibiting original art.

There will be artist demonstrations and artist chats, and all artwork is for sale, said organizer Amy Amdur. Musical entertainment will be provided by the band Cirrus Falcon.

“People loved them so much last year we’re bringing them back,” she said.

They have art in six basic categories: paintings, two-dimensional art like pastels and pen and ink, photography, jewelry, 3-D functional and 3-D non-functional (3-D functional means that the art is something you can use, like pottery.)

The lot is stroller-friendly and wheelchair accessible.

“People wonder if they should bring children, and I say of course,” she said. “It’s a great family event. We will even have a special tent where kids can make art.”

There will be also art demonstrations like glass blowing, which gives the fair an educational component as well, she said.

Some of the artists she’s excited about are a married couple who design and create leather bags and purses.

Watercolorist Don Brown is another favorite, she said.

“He goes along all the back roads in the Midwest and photographs buildings he doesn’t think are going to be around much longer, like an old gas station or an old café, and then he creates these pieces in watercolor, and they’re beautiful,” she said. “He’s known for his vanishing Americana.”

Photographer Jim Fitzgerald hiked for 29 days in the Alaskan outback, and he’s bringing his new photographs from the trip with him, she said.

“Everything from grizzly bears to the most beautiful, pristine lakes,” she said. “If you like nature and you like photography, you can come meet Jim and find out about his hikes and see some truly spectacular work.”

A painter named Roger Disney does oil paintings of Chicago in a “really unique style,” she said.

Sculptor Peter Rujida works with stone and wood.

“These pieces have so much soul and so much heart, I hope everyone can come and see them,” she said.

If it’s jewelry you are looking for, there are jewelers working in both gold and metal, she said.

“We have someone named Jay Lensink. He is a spectacular jeweler who works primarily in silver,” she said. “You can find earrings and necklaces and bracelets and all these beautiful pieces at affordable prices.”

The price points will be everything from $20 to $2,000, she said.

“There’s a lot of very affordable art at this show,” she said. “I think that’s what people like about this show. In this economy, it’s really nice to be able to splurge a little bit. You find yourself always saying no, it’s nice to be able to find an opportunity to say yes. The art that you find and put up in your home or office will be there for you 365 days a year. I call that good return on investment, because you’ll enjoy it every day.”

She suggests that people get a program, walk the show and circle their favorites. Take time to listen to the music or visit the kids’ art tent. If you love a piece that you love but it isn’t the right size, artists can be commissioned to create a work for you, she said.

“Whether you are there to look or to buy, I guarantee a lovely day,” she said.

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