Sponsor spotlight: Making the Edmonds Arts Festival magic happen – part 3, The Galleries

Main Gallery picture from 2023.

Gorgeous views, park-like grounds, a beach town vibe… the setting of the Edmonds Arts Festival has always been a big draw to visitors, rain or shine. While the energetic Field and the tranquil Plaza capitalize on outdoor spaces, one prime section of the festival beckons you indoors: The Galleries. Step inside the Frances Anderson Center and enter a world of rarefied fine art – from paintings to sculpture, photography to drawing, mixed media, digital art, artisan works and more – it all can be found in the indoor galleries. These top-level, highly curated displays truly set the Edmonds Arts Festival apart.

Explore the Juried Art Show in the Main Gallery and Adjoining Rooms

If you are awestruck at the diverse selection offered this year in the Galleries, you are not alone. According to Gallery Art Co-Director Janet Jensen, a record number of entries across all categories were received this year, making the jurors’ selection process especially challenging. From more than 1900 entries, jurors were asked to select 550 to 575 artworks representing a diverse range of art styles, techniques, and approaches.

“We want our galleries to highlight the amazing artists in our region and across the Northwest. We instruct our jurors to include as many artists as possible,” stated Jensen.

Make sure to explore all the great juried art inside the Main Gallery of Paintings and Sculpture in the gym, and the Photography and Digital Art Gallery in Room 207. Art purchases from these two galleries are picked up at the end of the Festival.

Small Works Marketplace

Small Works Gallery picture from 2023.

This is the second year of the Small Works Marketplace in Room 206. Here you will find amazing miniatures, incredible small paintings and fantastic small artisan works (jewelry, glass works, pottery, etc.). The Small Works Marketplace makes art collecting affordable, due to the smaller sizes. Purchases made in this juried gallery can be taken home the day of your purchase, rather than waiting until the last day of the Festival, like in the other galleries. New this year in the Small Works Marketplace is the Small Paintings. “We decided to differentiate small paintings from the miniatures category this year. We also wanted to expand the range of small painting sizes that could be entered for consideration. Now, paintings that are sized from 6”x9” to 12”x12” have a place in our show and we are excited to see the public’s response,” said Melissa Wadsworth, Co-Director, Gallery Arts. According to Wadsworth, the category has proved very popular with artists, with more than 300 entries for this year’s Small Paintings juried category.

Showcasing the Importance of Student Art

Student Art Gallery Picture from 2023.

With art education on the chopping block in so many of the area public schools, directors this year feel that the Student Art Galleries hold an even more significant place in the festival than in years past. Student Galleries are set up in Room 114 and the lower level of Frances Anderson Center, and walking through them will show you just how much talent could be lost if art education in our school district goes away.

Over 1000 pieces of art from Pre-K though 12th grade student artists of the Edmonds School District, Alderwood Early Childhood Center, Holy Rosary and Soundview schools is showcased this year, which was selected through two different procedures. One way is School Select, where each participating school is given an allotment of pieces they may display per their student population. It is the school’s choice as to how they decide which pieces to submit. Festival Student Art Liaison Laurie Piper had the daunting task of helping to organize all of this with the schools.

There is also Open Class Select, where kindergarten through 12th-grade student artists submit art for consideration. This may include students from other schools and homeschooled students who live with the Edmonds School District boundaries. Open Class is juried by two professional artists. This year, around 100 pieces of artwork were chosen from over 200 entries received for Open Class Select! Juried by professional artists and then wrangled by Student Art Directors Lisa Palmatier and Janey Hoff, the Student Art Gallery is a beloved part of the festival.

Honoring this Year’s Poster Artists

2024 Festival posters.

Don’t you just love the natural beauty of this year’s poster? See more of Heidi Farina’s original works in the Edmond Art Festival Foundation Gallery dedicated solely to her works, located right at the entrance to Frances Anderson Center.

In addition, student artist AJ Suda’s acrylic painting titled “Takeout” was selected to be on this year’s Student Art poster. AJ is currently a ninth grader at Meadowdale High School. You’ll be able to see the original poster art on display in Room 114, and the poster will be available for purchase in the Edmonds Arts Festival Store.

About the Festival 

The Edmonds Arts Festival has been a cherished event in Edmonds since 1958. Tens of thousands of people flock to this event held annually on Father’s Day weekend to browse the galleries, meet artists, shop, socialize with friends, and be entertained by local performing artists in a beautiful setting in the charming, waterfront city of Edmonds – home of the first certified Creative District in Washington state.

A portion of profits raised by the Festival each year is given to the Edmonds Arts Festival Foundation, a 501(c)(3) organization which supports educational and cultural enrichment of our community through the arts. The Foundation awards art scholarships, education grants, and installs public art. In addition, it supports multiple non-profit art-related programs and organizations.

This year, Edmonds Arts Festival runs June 14-16, 2024 (Friday and Saturday 10 a.m.-7 p.m., Sunday 10 a.m.-5 p.m.) at the Frances Anderson Center, 700 Main St., Edmonds.

Save yourself the hassle of trying to find street parking and utilize the free Festival shuttle at Edmonds College. You can park your car in the parking lot at Edmonds College on the west side of 68th Avenue West. Just enter from the roundabout on 204th Street Southwest and follow the signs to designated patron parking lots H, I or J. Then jump on one of the free shuttles that run every 15 minutes from Edmonds College to the Edmonds Art Festival in downtown Edmonds.

Learn more about what there is to see and do at edmondsartsfestival.com.

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