At Their Booth
More than 230 artists and craftspeople from around the country participated in the show. Students were invited to attend the Emerging Artists Party opening night and speak with other artists.
At the show, the ten students worked together to cover their booth in shifts. This meant they needed to not only speak for their art, but for their peers’ as well.
“It’s hard to know another’s work process or describe their work to a customer,” Pasma said. “We had an overwhelming amount of art.”
Pasma also thought it was interesting to see the difference in sales between jewelry and ceramics. He felt the jewelry sold more easily.
“With jewelry, you can wear and use it immediately,” he said. “But with ceramics, you have to carry it around.”
He recalled a customer showing interest in one of his peer’s large vases. But the customer walked away, not wanting to carry the vase around while shopping at the show. They finally returned at the end of the day to buy the vase.
This was all part of the School-to-Market experience. Learning about others’ artwork, speaking with professional studio artists about their businesses, and interacting with customers.
“My biggest takeaway was to see what actually goes into having a booth,” Pasma explained. “There is a lot to consider in setting up your space: shelves, lighting, how you want to display your art.”
“We got a lot of compliments on our booth,” he added.
Our Students are Artists
In their Fine Arts Association meetings, Studio Art majors discussed the American Craft Council and their participation in the Craft Show. They talked about the stigma that often surrounds the meaning of the terms of arts and crafts.
“We are artists, not craftspeople,” Pasma emphasized. “We are making art as a living. That’s the distinction.”
Pasma felt a second distinction needed to be made at the show. He and his classmates are artists.
“Many times, throughout the show, we felt dismissed because people would turn the conversation to focus on us being students from Stout, not us as artists,” he said. “But we are professional artists who make quality art.”