Redmond Town Center Arts Festival and Sidewalk Sale slated for June 22-24
By SAMANTHA PAK
Redmond Reporter Reporter
May 17, 2012 · 3:59 PM
The Redmond Town Center (RTC) is teaming up with the City of Redmond and Venues for Artists in the Local Area (VALA) Eastside for its 3rd annual Arts Festival and Sidewalk Sale from June 22-24.
This is the first year RTC has worked with outside organizations for the event and senior marketing manager Christina Henning said the partnership has been very beneficial for them.
"By partnering with VALA and the city, we're elevating the level of artists (coming to the festival)," she said.
VALA founder Jessica Lambert, whose nonprofit organization focuses on showcasing local artists' works in creative venues in Redmond and throughout the Eastside, said through her work, she has been able to expand the reach to artists for the festival.
She added that as head of an arts organization, she had been thinking about holding an arts festival. However, when she learned about the RTC's annual festival, she thought uniting her efforts with Henning and her team would create a stronger festival.
The three-day festival will be free and its hours will be Friday and Saturday from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. and Sunday from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. It will be around Center Street Plaza on Northeast 74th Street between 164th and 166th avenues northeast.
There will be about 100 artist booths where art lovers can purchase pieces directly from artists. Henning said one of the goals for the festival is to make art accessible to all, which is why it is held at the shopping center rather than a museum or gallery. She added that the pieces for purchase will range in price, so there will be something for everyone.
"(We were) looking for artists that have a range of pieces for sale," she said about their selection process, adding that they have had artists from the past two festivals apply to return.
Henning said this year's festival will also feature onstage demonstrations and workshops throughout the weekend, making the event more interactive than in the past. Like the event itself, these will be free, though there may be some fees for materials in some of the workshops.
The festival will also have live music, food vendors and a sidewalk sale featuring the wares of town center retailers.
In addition, the festival will feature original artwork submitted by festival artists. There will be two categories: a general festival category and a special Centennial category in honor of Redmond's 100th birthday.
The top 25 submissions — as selected by a jury — will be featured in a special VALA Eastside Centennial Collection Gallery, hosted by the town center throughout the festival. The top three entries — also selected by the jury — in both categories will receive Best of Show prizes and be prominently displayed in the gallery throughout the event. Lambert said there will also be cash prizes.
This year's jury will include Redmond Arts Commission coordinator Joshua Heim, former Pilchuck Glass School director and Purdue University professor Marge Levy, Microsoft Corp. painter and graphic designer Donna Wallace and Redmond Digital Arts Festival curator and founder Kamal Seigel.
Heim said while the Arts Commission is working to get more art in the city, they are mostly taking a back seat in this arts festival. Although, they will be kicking off the event by giving out this year's Volunteer Art Awards at the beginning of the weekend.Contact Redmond Reporter Reporter Samantha Pak at firstname.lastname@example.org or 425-867-0353, ext. 5052.