Show Report – Florence ArtsFest 2010

by bethwicker on February 9, 2010

This was my second year participating in the annual Florence ArtsFest, put on by the Florence Regional Arts Alliance in Florence, SC.  Last year was a pretty good show, with two floors of artists, probably 30+ in all; an excellent opening reception very well attended; good if not great traffic with people who were actually buying, and not just bottom fishing.

This year was a total bomb.  No signs outside, no signs on the street, next to nothing in the local media, nothing on the internet…  A number of people I know in Florence had no idea the event was even going on.

Less than half the artists from last year – 16 this year – all on one floor with plenty of room left over, so it looked rather lost.  Less than half the people at the opening, and unlike last year they weren’t buying.  I saw customers who bought my high end pieces last year leaving with nothing – just partied and left. 

We opened Thursday night this year – last year it was Friday night.  We had open hours on Friday, Saturday and Sunday this year.  Last year it was just Friday night and Saturday.  They had a total of 10 buyers for the entire show all day Friday… 10!!!  If we had 10 people come through on Sunday I would be amazed. 

Florence is a good sized city, with over 133,000 people.  This fall I did a one day show in Great Falls, SC (see earlier blog post), which has less than 5,000 people.  I sold more in one day in Great Falls than I did in four days in Florence.  Now that is just sad!

No one did well, and there were some folks who sold nothing in all four days.  In all a quite dismal experience.  The upside is that I did have a number of people who are interested in my classes that I teach, so hopefully that will turn out well.

Since I often get asked to show pictures of the shows I do, here are photos of the various booths that were there.  Sorry I have misplaced my program and can’t identify all the artists….

Shot of my booth
Shot of my booth

 

Barbara Mellen - The Earring Lady - dichroic glass
Barbara Mellen – The Earring Lady – dichroic glass
Strung beaded jewelry.
Strung beaded jewelry.
Glenda Calder, more dichroic glass jewelry
Glenda Calder, more dichroic glass jewelry
Marion Berry, jewelry, prints, photos, note cards, etc.
Marion Berry, jewelry, prints, photos, note cards, etc.
Jim and Sally Sloutherland, jewelry, photos, notecards, etc.
Jim and Sally Sloutherland, jewelry, photos, notecards, etc.
One of the painters who had cool t-shirts.
One of the painters who had cool t-shirts.
Another painter
Another painter
Very cool decorative folk art sort of paintings....
Very cool decorative folk art sort of paintings….
Colleen Appleton-Critcher, Painter
Colleen Appleton-Critcher, Painter
Greg's prints - original prints
Greg
Op Art - glass etched and painted
Op Art – glass etched and painted
Photographer
Photographer
Douglas Gray, potter
Douglas Gray, potter
Tim Green, painter
Tim Green, painter
Fabulous wood turner
Fabulous wood turner
bethwicker

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