Saturday, September 20, 2014

Art the Beautiful on an annual field trip, the Plainsboro Festival of the Arts

Today was our annual Festival of the Arts, a Plainsboro Public Library event celebrating all the arts and our local artists, too.  With events ranging from an abstract art exhibit in the gallery, with art talk, to pastel portraits, to Chinese knotted jewelry, to fine embroidery, to drawing, felting, knitting, sidewalk chalk art, giant Lego play, hula hoop dancing with a dog (!) to weaving on the giant Earthloom, to Chinese calligraphy and watercolor, to mandalas, music all day, ranging from classical strings, to folk to pop, all live, and all kinds of other happenings, well something for everyone!

Happy crowds all day long, and I was at the EGA, Embroiderers' Guild of America display and demo, and we were mobbed all afternoon, it was wonderful!  met some lovely new people, hoping we've gained new members, too.

And old friends showed up, great reunions all around.  A community Big Win.  When you consider how small our town is, just over 20,000 people, to put on such a daylong event, with dozens of willing artists donating time and expertise to happy festival goers, hundreds of people attending over the day, and all with a great air of cheer, well, we're great, that's all there is to it..

I'm showing just a fraction of the work that goes into making this happen. Planning started months ago, but this is the day-of, last minute arrangements happening.

 Felting area in preparation

 Earthloom set up ready for young weavers

 Mandalas set up to give ideas to young mandala makers

 Hula hoops waiting for occupants

Art journals at work, to encourage all comers to try their hand at it

 Elizabeth here setting up for an afternoon of creating pastel portraits

 Paint and little clay lamps ready for Diwali decoration

Greek columns being arranged in place on the light poles.

Then the people start to arrive and it's all go from then on.

 Felting getting under way

 Chinese calligraphers and watercolor artists

 Young builders at work on their Lego area

after they've done with their sidewalk chalk art

 You last saw this loom with my Four Sisters tapestry on it in progress before the picture earlier showing it ready for new action.  Here young weavers set to work on their hangings.

Just had to include the dog! That's Carol, the Library Director, persuading him to pose for the camera.  Other duties as assigned, as they say in the job description!

 High school age classical string players

 Henna designing at work

Trying her own mandala, with help from artist Julia

One of the calligrapher's works

And indoors, more events, more crowds, more fun

Some of our embroidery on display

Skilled embroiderers Evie and Florence confer, and Florence's cousin, also Florence, gets on with her schwalm (German whitework_

 Visitors admiring some of Evie's work

 and learning some fine points from Florence

 And from Evie

 And a sight to gladden the heart, a lady, thank you Simone, signing up for more information about the embroiderers' guild.

An exhibit of abstract art in the gallery, with a talk by the artist

 Here seen above by herself, and then in the company of your blogwriter, a friend insisting on taking our pic together.  The beautiful one is Tatiana!

And here is Iris Chang, a longtime friend both of the library and its arts programs, and of this writer.  We all owe a lot to Iris, hadn't seen her in ages, and there she was in the gallery admiring Tatiana's brilliant work.

Home now, and recovering from all the stimuli of a terrific day.


  1. All this in one day? You live in a wonderful area in order to have something like this happening. It serves as a showcase for the art(ists) and, even better I think, as encouragement for others to take part. Great day all around!

  2. what a wonderful day everyone must have had, so many different things going on so everyone is sure to have found something they really enjoyed creating.
    You are surrounded by so many creative people to inspire one and all

  3. That really does look like it was a terrific day. Just the sort of festival I like to go to.


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