The arts and crafts festival is a senior project by New College student Amelia Horshok, who hopes to highlight the talents of students, faculty members and alumni while weaving the community together through art, she said.
Horshok, a senior majoring in interdisciplinary studies with a depth study in creative space, has taken courses in interior design, theater set design and other creative-based courses to become a visual merchandiser.
The Tuscaloosa native began attending the Kentuck Festival of the Arts at 2 years old and wanted to feature established artists, student artists, musicians and other performers closer to campus.
“The origin of the event was seeing another New College senior put on a cultural event that inspired me to want to do something similar,” she said. “I saw how much fun that event was and thought I could accomplish a fun event in a different forum.”
Homegrown Farmer’s Market donated tents, allowing each vendor to have a table free of charge. Lori Taylor, a senior majoring in studio art, has been involved with other art festivals and said she was pleasantly surprised at the opportunity. She said she is excited to see what other artists bring.
“It’s nice that [Creative Space: Art from the Crimson Heart] is closer to campus and that students are invited and there’s no fee, so more people can be part of it,” she said.
Taylor is also the president of Creative Co-op and has been working in conjunction with Horshok and the student group to make Thursday’s festival the first of an annual series.
In addition to the vendors, the festival will include other performances by musicians and poets and live art demonstrations. Mitchell Griest, a junior majoring in computer science and studio art, will do demonstrations of aerosol paintings on canvas.
“I think [the demonstrations] are fun because they’re interesting to watch, and they’re short enough to hold people’s attention – it’s only about seven minutes from start to finish,” he said. “And there’s enough of the process where it doesn’t look like it will be anything that when it turns out to be something somewhat refined, it’s exciting, and I think there’s a reveal aspect to it.”
Rachel Dobson, a communications specialist and visual resources curator for the department of art and art history, helped Horshok reach out to artists and vendors.
“Besides giving all these artists another chance to share their work, [Horshok’s] project also emphasizes a holistic ‘creative space’ aspect of this event,” Dobson said. “Whether we University folks realize it or not, we always need more opportunities to be creative.”