Ann Arbor Art Fairs 2009

Photo: Amy at Starbucks, Ann ArborAmy, Aaron and I enjoyed an afternoon at the Ann Arbor Art Fairs this past Saturday. I’m still recovering from the fun, but wanted to briefly share what I bought at the fairs.

Several years back, I saw some hanging plant rooters at the Crosby Art Festival here in town. For whatever reason, I didn’t buy one, assuming that (like most other booths) I’d see them at another fair in the near future. Turns out that the artisans aren’t exactly local; they’re from Vermont. So, this weekend, thanks to Aaron’s sharp eye in seeing their booth, I finally picked myself up one of the more popular copper rooters from Vermont Nature Creations. I’m planning to head outside sometime this week and cut some catnip to try rooting in my new piece of art. If I like it, perhaps I’ll buy myself another for a spider or two.

One of my favorite parts of going to an art show is watching the people who will actually show you their craft and how they create their wares. Linda Tong was one of those people this year. She creates Asian laquerware, and showed us the delicate handpainting she does for each creation. Knowing this, the Maneki Neko I got for $15 was quite a steal.

During our turn around the Liberty Street Courtyard, I found a booth of jewelry and earrings created from bottle caps and coins and other bits of found items. I bought a pair of earrings made from small Asian coins — only $10 for the pair. She also had earrings made from typewriter keys, but I couldn’t find appropriate initials (except maybe I.T., for my occupation). Which is really too bad, because I absolutely adored those earrings. The Fun Company has some of their wares posted online, but nothing quite like the Asian coin earrings I bought, unfortunately, and no typewriter key earrings.

One booth I quite admired, but didn’t have the coin (or the real estate) to purchase and properly display, was John Chumack’s Galactic Images. His astronomical photos have been featured in National Geographic and Time Magazine, among others, and he has an impressive backyard observatory in Dayton, Ohio. Seeing his photos almost made me want to go out and buy myself a telescope (preferably one I could connect to a camera body). Some of my favorite photos of his, though, were ones where both the stars and the landscape were amazingly sharp; those intrigued me from both a technical and an artistic perspective.

I’m glad that, this year, I actually bought some useful and easily-displayed items that won’t still be leaning up against a wall a year later, unmatted and unframed.

In addition to the booths, the food, and the company, I also enjoyed taking photos with my Lomo LC-A. But that’s another post for another day…