TN Creates at the Secret City Festival
The Art Center will reprise our partnership with Celebrate Oak Ridge and the City of Oak Ridge to produce TN Creates, a juried arts and crafts fair indoors at the Secret City Festival on September 24 and 25th, unless community health conditions worsen and officials mandate restrictions. It will showcase some of the fine art and craft forms being practiced in our region. The event will be the thirteenth juried craft fair within the Secret City Festival. TN Creates has grown each year as the community realized the show was part of the event. This year, due to the pandemic and the resulting shifting schedules, the festival is moving into the fall so we hope for cooler weather and good crowds. The Art Center will be at the Civic Center in the Gymnasium with a wealth of wonderful items straight from the makers—those wonderful creative artisans that defy sameness and produce unique items that surprise and delight. Because schools will be in session during the new timeframe, the fair will be held from 2 until 7 PM on Friday and 9 AM to 7 PM on Saturday. Since the show is inside the gym and some Septembers can be very warm, guests will find it not only a great place to find some wonderful craft pieces, but a terrific place to cool off. During the show there will be continuous demonstrations in many media by members of the Art Center and participating artists including painting, block printing, pottery and several jewelry making techniques. There will be seating around the demonstrators for those who are interested in watching and learning more about the processes artists use. Late on Friday and on Saturday parking will be available just across the street at the high school parking lot and at signed venues around the city.
We hope you will plan to attend the event and support our local artisans. Artists always enjoy the company of those who love original work and other creatives. In addition, we are seeking volunteers to help with the fair, before, during and after the show. We always need people to man booths so the artists may take a break and have a meal. In addition, we could use some help in set-up and break down when artists need us to watch over their work while they load and unload. Have an art form you would like to demonstrate? We can always use more demonstrators at the festival. If you are interested in helping with this project, call Leah at 482-1441. The more the merrier!
All work in TN Creates will be original artwork. Most are one-of-a-kind items created for the event. Artists who will be exhibiting include potters, jewelry makers, painters, glass artists, wood workers, paper artists, photographers, gourd carvers, and soap makers. Many participants are members of the Foothills Craft Guild which started over 40 years ago in Oak Ridge. Several “crowd favorites” will be back from previous years, while new artists will bring new dimension and flair. Many of the artists will be working in their booths or will be demonstrating their craft in the demonstration areas at some point during the festival. For those who are always trying to find the perfect “something” that is unusual, creative and meaningful, there will be a wealth of options from which you can select.
The event will provide a hold/pick-up service so patrons will not have to worry about carrying purchases during the festival. Items purchased from any TN Creates vendor can be bagged, labeled, and held at the Art Center main booth so purchasers may wander the festival unencumbered. Items may be picked up before seven o’clock. The Art Center is providing the service for the convenience of patrons and to allow people to enjoy the festival while keeping their purchases safe.