Meet the artists in Breck
BRECKENRIDGE – Meet the Artists started at Keystone with about a dozen Summit County artists. Now in its 13th year, the art show has expanded to include fewer local artists and more artists from across Colorado and neighboring states.Whether that’s good or bad depends upon who you ask.The Summit County Arts Council (SCAC), which produces the event as its major fundraiser, received twice as many applicants as last year. Out of about 70 artists, a jury chose 34. About five are Summit County artists.”We had twice as many applicants as we had booth space, so consequently, the show quality is going to be very high,” said SCAC president Bob Hoppin.
“The quality of the art submitted was excellent,” said jury panelist David Weihnacht, who judged the submissions with Hoppin and Cecelia Eidemiller. “I was surprised at how many submissions we got. Out of about 70, we were easily able to choose 34, and the three of us were in agreement. Things we picked all stood out. There were interesting sculpture pieces – usually one to two artists from each medium that stood out. There were 10-15 we just said ‘wow’ to.”But Sandy Greenhut, who started the SCAC in 1990, is disappointed the show lost its focus on local artists.”That’s not what the purpose was,” Greenhut said. “I started the arts council to promote Summit County artists. The first thing we did was Meet the Artists with maybe 12 Summit County artists.”Though she wanted to maintain the local focus, she discovered she needed to promote the event regionally.
“At the time I was running it, local artists didn’t want to contribute,” she said. “They didn’t have time. They took and didn’t want to give – and they were right; you don’t expect doctors to contribute their time, but we expect artists to contribute their time. I think (opening the show to other artists) grew out of that.”Another conflict the show has run into involves time slots. In the past, Meet the Artists took place in August at the Riverwalk Center, but as the Breckenridge Music Institute Orchestral season and other events filled the venue, Meet the Artists got pushed back to September, when traffic was light.Last year, the council decided to hold the event outside of the tent, so it could schedule the show during August while tourists were still in town.”We did it (on the lawn in August) last year, and it was very successful,” Hoppin said. “The exhibitors were really pleased with the situation. Traffic was a lot heavier in August than in September, and the ones who exhibited outside thought it worked out OK, even if there was a little rain. It’s a good weekend; we don’t have to compete with a lot of things.”
Meet the Artists raises money through booth fees, which total about $7,000, Hoppin said. The money helps the council provide scholarships to high school students; run the Focus on the Child program, which brings guest art teachers into the school district; lead the Snowflake Sculpture Championships; and teach classes at the Robert Whyte House in collaboration with the town of Breckenridge.The show runs from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday on the lawn near the Riverwalk Center in Breckenridge.Kimberly Nicoletti can be reached at (970) 668-3998, ext. 245, or at email@example.com.
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