Mt. Lebanon Artists’ Market returns
A video of the 2016 Mt. Lebanon Artists’ Market shows Steve Denenberg talking through what appears to be a serious wound.
“I have a bullet hole in my head with blood dripping down my nose,” he said. “I had people stop me on the street and say, ‘Can I take you to the hospital? Do you know how injured you are?’ The kids were that good.”
The “kids” were students in Tom Savini’s Special Make-Up Effects Program at Douglas Education Center in Monessen, and they’ll return this year to liven up the proceedings during the fourth annual Artists’ Market. The event is from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sept. 23, with special activities following, and 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sept. 24 in the Academy Avenue Parking Lot, behind the 600 block of Washington Road.
Mt. Lebanon High School visual arts students will be on hand to demonstrate the techniques they are learning, under the direction of Jennifer Rodriguez, who chairs the school district’s secondary Fine Arts Department.
• 10 a.m. to noon – Painting demo. Observe students working on current projects in acrylic paint, and stretching and preparing canvases.
• Noon to 2 p.m. – Drawing demo. Students will work on current projects using a variety of drawing media. Ask them to show you how anyone can learn to draw.
• 2 to 4 p.m. – Ceramics. See how a lump of clay transforms into a functional piece of pottery, as students demonstrate wheel-throwing and hand-building techniques.
• 4 to 6 p.m. – Open studio. Catch a glimpse into how students execute their projects on their own time with multiple media at their fingertips.
• 10 a.m. to noon – “Trash to treasure.” See how students “upcycle” used and forgotten goods into works of art.
• Noon to 2 p.m. – Artists’ trading cards. See students use mixed media to create cars, and stop by to create your own.
• 2 to 5 p.m. – Open studio.
Denenberg served as event chairman last year, and his wife, Wendy, is chairing the 2017 version.
“This is something we’ve always wanted to do, because it’s the same as our business,” Wendy said about Create-a-Frame/Handworks Gallery, which the Denenbergs have owned in Mt. Lebanon since 1975. “Our business is all handmade American craft. So that’s what we love.”
The festival, presented by the economic growth-promoting Mt. Lebanon Partnership, features more than 65 artists displaying their work, plus two days’ worth of demonstrations, interactive presentations and music. Pete Hewlett and Scott Anderson will perform both afternoons, and the Red Beans and Rice Combo on Saturday evening.
A panel of jurors who are professionals in the arts determines which applicants will participate.
“This year was really difficult, because we received way more applications than we could accept. There are lots of people who applied whom we would have loved to have in the show. But we also have to keep our number,” Wendy said. “And we try to encompass all the different media so that we have a good selection from each one.”
The scope also works for the space available.
“In some respects, though, having 67 people on that lot is perfect,” Steve said. “It’s a good size. People get to go around that parking lot three or four times and really get to see what the artists have.”
Visitors to the volunteer-organized event also will be able to check out the food trucks that will be lined up on Academy Avenue, and they can take chances on a drawing that produces substantial benefits.
“The majority of our artists will donate a piece of their work to showcase what they do, and the proceeds from the raffle have always gone to a part of the Mt. Lebanon Partnership’s Arts Initiative,” Wendy explained. “So this year, we’ve decided to take part of that, and we’re going to have a scholarship for a graduating senior who’s a Mt. Lebanon resident enrolling in an accredited art program.”
The market features artists not only from Mt. Lebanon and the Pittsburgh area, but also from some nearby states, representing a high degree of quality, variety and originality for one of the fastest-growing community arts festivals in the region, according to Wendy.
“And the idea, also, is showcasing Mt. Lebanon,” she said. “We want to bring people to Mt. Lebanon who never cross the bridge.”
For more information, visit mtlebopartnership.org/calendar/2017/9/23/mt-lebanon-artists-market.