BEND, Ore. - Even before news of Art in the High Desert's national ranking spread, Central Oregon's premier juried fine arts & crafts show was drawing record numbers of applications from across North America.
A juried show, Art in the High Desert asks applying artists to go above and beyond the usual and takes artist selection very seriously. It is also a show that is created, managed and run by artists and art patrons.
When applications closed in mid-February, show organizers could boast a ranking as the 14th best fine arts festival in sales in the nation as compiled by Greg Lawler's Fine Art Fair SourceBook. They could also toot their horn about a record number of applications (480) from artists in 28 states and British Columbia.
"When the applications began coming in, we knew right away that even though our standards are very high this pool of artists was going to make the jury process extremely difficult," said show director Carla Fox. "The quality of work is simply astounding."
From those 480 applications, the jury had the task of choosing just over 100 to invite, nearly half of which are new this year. Those artists coming to Bend in August bring with them a wealth of stories and accolades.
"Furniture maker Greg Klassen just participated in the Smithsonian Craft Show, a great story in itself," said board member Cameron Kaseberg. "But the story took a huge turn when Martha Stewart requested a live interview with Greg on the show floor. That's just one example."
Carla adds "other examples include artists featured on Oregon Art Beat, in local and national magazines and those that have wagon loads of Best of Show awards to name but a few. It is an honor to have these artists coming to Bend and sharing their work."
Art in the High Desert showcases over 100 talented, professional artists each year and takes place the weekend before Labor Day weekend in Bend's Old Mill District. The 2013 festival event dates are August 23, 24 and 25. For more information on the Art in the High Desert visit www.artinthehighdesert.com.