Held Saturday September 21 and Sunday September 22 at Annmarie Sculpture Gardens and Arts Center in Solomon’s, the visitors and artists alike enjoyed a great day with perfect weather around the garden.
A beautiful setting and beautiful weather was all that was needed for the annual Artsfest at Annmarie Sculpture Gardens and Arts Center on Dowell Road. Over 170 artists and their works of art brought thousands of visitors to the center during last weekend’s show.
This year’s sponsors, to name a few were the Arts Council of Calvert County, the Maryland State Arts Council, Dominion Energy, SMECO, J Calvin Wood Jr., Inc., Patuxent High School NJROTC, Lexington Park Dentistry and Sabre System.
Joan Danoff of Georgetown, a sub city of Washington D.C. joined the art show this year for the first time after applying, at the urge of friends, also participated. Danoff’s love for art began when she was a child, but then she detoured off into the restaurant business. She owned her own restaurant for 10 years.
“When I decided to sell it, my husband said, “you can’t work for anybody else,” she said, “So I started making jewelry. I’ve taken a lot of classes all over the place. It’s really a lot of fun.”
“I applied to enter [Artsfest] last year but it rained out,” she said. “Friends of mine are artists here and they say it’s a fantastic show. I think it’s fantastic also because it’s so calm. Although the shoppers are here, which is nice, I appreciate the setting.
Danoff’s favorite piece is one that she learned in Kentucky from a gentleman that taught a workshop. “The instructor owned and operated the enameling factory for over 35 years and he shared this technique with us,” she said. “It’s a technique of firing many layers of enamel. It really turned out well. It looks almost like watercolor.”
Robin Culkin, a first year participant, shared her love for photography and painting after many years of being a stay at home mom. A photo of a baby elephant nestled tight within its mother’s grasp caught the eye of those passing by. The piece was priced over $2,000.00. “I’m going for that Golden Book feel,” she said. “It’s been a long time since I’ve worked with it. I stayed home and dedicated my time at home and now it’s time to work on getting self-published. I’d like to illustrate children’s books and publish on Amazon.”
Owner of Eastern Shore Wood Designs, Kevin Finney displayed his exotic woods and turnings after a lifetime of working with wood. He said he got started with the business about five years after a real passion for the craft.
“We drove to Pennsylvania one week to take a look at the machinery that I’d need to buy,” Finney said, and my wife said, “buy it” and we tinkered around with it for about a year and then it just turned into a business. We started out going to four or five shows a year and now we’re up to over 25 shows a year.
The Finney family is now traveling as far as Cape Code, Massachusetts. For more information about the products, visit Easternshorewooddesigns.com.
Parran Collery presented her handmade tile. Visit her site at earthahandmadetile.com and read about her amazing journey into starting her own business in her, “small and funky” studio in Southern Maryland.
Mark Cottman shared his gallery of painting on the wooded path just near the harmonic sounds of the Hand Pan played by Joel Tuminaro. The Sidley’s also shared their mix of melodic and soulful sounds in the midafternoon on Saturday.
Over 35 performers and bands with four stages put on amazing entertainment this year. The crowd enjoyed the music along with food from vendors such as Blue Wind Gourmet, Nicolletti’s Pizza, Sherri’s Crab Cakes and Sunshine Girls Lemonade to mention a few.
The Arts Council is pleased to announce The Best in Show Award was presented to Larry Ringgold, driftwood sculpture artist.
Larry Ringgold is a well know craftsman in Calvert County, and shows and sells his amazing animals and sea creature creations throughout the East Coast.
The Best in Show Award has been awarded by the Arts Council for over 10 years at Artsfest, located in beautiful Annmarie Garden, Solomons, MD
Please enjoy the picture gallery below.
Tammy Showalter / Calvert Beacon Reporter