Under the shade of some fine old oak, black cherry, and hemlock trees, a group of fine artists and artisans assemble to display their work. It’s the fourth full weekend in June, and the natural setting and friendly small town atmosphere of Kane, Pennsylvania have lured the artists to Evergreen Park for the 10th Annual Art in the Wilds outdoor show. The white tents are set up uniformly, and out of the cars and vans come wonderful teases - brilliantly colored canvases, tiny boxes with shimmering treasures, smooth-as-satin woodturnings, and delicately drawn figures. The artists are setting the stage for a beautiful show.
The Art in the Wilds show began as a discussion amongst friends sitting on a porch on a spring evening in 2006. Wouldn’t it be great to make Kane a destination for fine artwork? Co-founders David and Marilyn Blackmore knew that there was already interest in the area for the arts. Kane’s location nestled in the state-designated “Pennsylvania Wilds” region produced the name of the show. After researching other art shows and interviewing artists and show organizers, a committee of people with specific skills was put into action. With the goal of expanding the role of the arts in the surrounding rural communities, Art in the Wilds has, from the beginning, placed a strong emphasis on showcasing quality work.
Placing a top priority on providing an exceptional show, the organizers work hard to meet the needs of the participating artists while providing visitors with a fresh experience. Browsing the artwork, visitors have the opportunity to talk with each artist and discover what inspires them to create their unique artwork. Artists are encouraged to demonstrate their techniques on-site. Watching as a mound of wet clay is turned into a fine bowl or mug is both informative and inspiring for the viewer.
The details are all set for this year’s Art in the Wilds, scheduled for Saturday and Sunday, June 25-26 in scenic Evergreen Park in Kane, Pennsylvania. The outdoor juried fine arts show is one of the only juried art shows in McKean County. To be accepted into the show, artists must go through an application process. Submitted photographs of their recent works are juried on overall impact, originality, presentation, design, and mastering of their chosen technique. All works must be the artist’s original creations, made by hand. The artists displaying their works come primarily from Pennsylvania and neighboring states in the mid-Atlantic region. They bring a variety of creative media including acrylic, oil and watercolor painting, drawing, pastels, woodworking, jewelry, photography, ceramics, glass, fiber arts, leather, and metal sculpture.
Located in the northern Alleghenies of Pennsylvania, Art in the Wilds attracts visitors from a wide radius, including western Pennsylvania, western New York and eastern Ohio. They have discovered that the Art in the Wilds show is an ideal setting to browse the artwork of the creative artists and artisans. To get to Kane, PA, visitors travel through beautiful hardwood forests, enjoying the lushness of June in the Pennsylvania Wilds. You can follow the road signs that lead you straight to the show. Free parking around the perimeter of the park invites visitors to step out and stroll the artists’ booths. Handicapped spaces are available on the Birch Street side of the event.
The family-friendly event charges no admission. What a joy to see whole families gathering in the park where their children of all ages get to experience art. There is also a student art exhibit which displays the work of talented high schoolers from McKean and its four surrounding counties that opens at noon on Saturday.
The Art in the Wilds show is organized by an all-volunteer team of committee members under the leadership of co-founder Marilyn Blackmore. All of the show organizers work hard to represent quality artwork and a balance of the different creative media to ensure a tantalizing shopping experience. The committee works year round to set dates, produce marketing materials, plan the venue, and recruit vendors. The critical job of securing the artists, sponsors, and vendors is a process that begins many months ahead of the show.
The director and committee members are all volunteers. Local sponsors are recruited to support advertising and marketing efforts. Their names and logos are displayed around the gazebo and the committee hopes you will support their businesses while you are in town. The show has successfully qualified for grants from Pennsylvania Partners in the Arts (supported by the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts) and the Kane Community Development Foundation.
The Kane community welcomes the many visitors during the show weekend and the artists and visitors appreciate the hospitality tent and the cadre of on-site volunteers. The friendly atmosphere of the Kane community, along with the quality of the work being exhibited, has contributed to the growth of the show, which began in 2007.
Visitors to the Art in the Wilds show can stroll over to the historic Kane Depot, one block from the park. There they will find ArtWorks at the Depot, an artists’ cooperative, which displays and sells the works of area artists. Also at the depot are local historic artifacts and a selection of Holgate toys.
A variety of food vendors are available during Art in the Wilds in Evergreen Park for lunch and snacks, and there are restaurants available in ‘Uptown’ Kane. Stop by the show’s Hospitality tent to find other awesome things to do in the area. And purchase a t-shirt to take home along with those very special art pieces. Be sure to check for artist demonstrations in the gazebo.
The Art in the Wilds show, which this year is celebrating its 10th year, is held during the fourth full weekend of June every year in Evergreen Park, Kane, Pennsylvania. The event, which this year will take place on June 25 and 26, will run from 10am-5pm both days. To learn more, visit www.artinthewilds.org.
The Art in the Wilds committee is pleased to welcome the following artists to the 2016 Fine Arts Show:
• Anthony Arkus-hand-forged iron
• Lisa Arkus-2D mixed media paper and painting
• Pamela Bartl-handwoven cotton clothing
• Chandler Beatty-wildlife artwork
• Linda Berryman-fiber, leather
• Becky Blair-jewelry
• Roland and Geno Boni-stoneware and porcelain clay
• Chris DeStefano-wood
• Al Dornisch-acrylic painting
• Richelle Dourte-jewelry
• Larry Downey-photography
• Denise Drummond-drawings and paintings
• Mark English-metal sculpture
• Karen Fitzpatrick-stained glass
• Dewey Fladd-photography
• Leslie Hallaby-Moore- chain-maille jewelry
• Dan Hayward-functional fused glass and stained glass
• Lana Heckendorn-porcelain ceramics
• Art Heim-landscape, wildlife and still life photography
• Rocky Holland-nature photography
• Peggy Houser-bead weaving and bead embroidery jewelry
• Charles Hughes-ceramics
• Dawn Johnson-forged and sculpted metal jewelry
• Stacie Johnson-Leske- lightweight wheel-thrown white stoneware ceramics
• John Kamerer-flower photography
• Gregg Kristophel-wooden utensils
• Donna Little-original jewelry designs in pewter, copper and brass
• LeAnne Marquis-jewelry
• Deborah Moyer-hand formed metal and gemstone jewelry
• Jack Northrop-wood turned vessels
• Jack Paluh-oil paintings and limited edition canvas prints
• Ellen Paquette-acrylic, oil and fiber
• Kathleen Schnell-fused glass
• Kevin Schoonover-photography
• Dan Sullivan-glass jewelry
• Lanny Tewell-leather
• Curt Weinhold-photographs
• Dave Zaborowski-wood