Leeann Kroetsch felted shawl

Leeann Kroetsch felted shawl
Tampa fiber artist Leeann Kroetsch has an eye for detail, along with an ability to integrate color, inspiring her to fabricate wondrous wearable art pieces which contain richly layered texture and unique surface design.

November 21 and December 5, 2020

Florida CraftArt’s 23rd Festival celebrating fine craft is happening! But with a twist – it will be a smaller version of Tampa Bay’s highly anticipated annual fall festival that typically showcases 100 fine craft artists and attracts collectors and enthusiasts alike each fall in the heart of downtown St. Petersburg.

This year’s festival, free to the public as always, will be held outdoors by the Florida CraftArt gallery at 501 Central Avenue and directly across the street in the parking lot of Regions Bank. Jurors for the 2020 festival selected 36 artists total, 18 of which will be displaying and selling their award-winning work on each of the two bookending Saturdays before and after the Thanksgiving holiday.

“Thanks to major support from The Red Apple Group and Regions Bank, we are thrilled to be able to move forward with our 23rd festival of fine craft,” says Tyler Jones, Board President of Florida CraftArt.  “It ‘takes a village’ to stage our annual two-day festival, and this year, that village was adversely affected by Covid. However, as our mission is to help fine craft artists, we were determined to not let our artists down, and ultimately found the way forward with creating the smaller event we are calling “CraftArt With a Twist.” The event spotlight artists and their work and it presented to festivalgoers in a safe, responsible way.”

Long dedicated to engaging and mentoring the next generation of fine craft artists, Florida CraftArt also features the talents of six emerging artists (representing ceramic, mixed media and glass) with the support of the DMG School Project. Showing and selling their work at the festival alongside the nation’s best fine craft artists, each “Emerging Artist” receives a free booth, a professional photography session sponsored by Brian James Photography, and postcards sponsored by Color Concepts. Additional Emerging Artists sponsors are Kevin Beck, Michael and Andria Graham, Kathryn Howd and Edward Rucks, David and Becky Ramsey, and Robert F. and Alexandria Welker.

Linda Caristo - Monarch Brooch

Linda Caristo – Monarch Brooch.jpg
North Carolina jeweler Linda Caristo specializes in translucent Plique a Jour enamel with resin. The enamel resembles stained glass windows in jewelry.

On Saturday, November 21, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., the work of these fine-craft artists will be featured:

Ceramics: William Kidd, Suzy Pease, Harry Welsch, Andrew Wender

Fiber: Leeann Kroetsch, Robert Stadnycki:

Jewelry: Marc Aune, Charles Bahringer, Linda and Carl Caristo, William Carlie, and Lynn Hardesty

Metal: Javier Dones

Mixed Media: Artists of ArtLofts, Anne Ross Oliva

Sculpture: Terry Andrews

At the dawn of their career, these artists are mentored and exhibiting for the first time in an outdoor art festival.

Emerging Artists: Tyler Quintin (ceramics), Diana Hirschhorn (jewelry), and Janna Kennedy-Hyten (mixed media)

William Kidd

William Kidd
Visitors to CraftArt with a Twist will have the opportunity to meet ceramic artist William Kidd who is one of Florida CraftArt’s most popular artists.

On Saturday, December 5, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., the final festival day will feature the work of  these fine craft artists:

Ceramics: John Kellum, Sarah King, and Glenn Woods

Fiber: Nneka Jones

Jewelry: Trina Cahlander, Kristie MacGregor, Luis Perez, Wendy Thurlow, and Barbara Umbel

Mixed Media: Holly Apperson, Cindy Hirt Pardue, and Artists of ArtLofts

Sculpture: John and Sandie Formato, Randy Pardue, and Benjamin Peterson

Emerging Artists: Esther Aall (ceramics), Robyn Crosa (mixed media), and Mary Ann Ziegler (glass)

To learn more about the festival, become a sponsor or become part of Florida CraftArt’s partially tax-deductible Collector’s Circle starting at $250, visit Florida CraftArt online at www.FloridaCraftArt.org, or call (727) 821-7391. Admission is free to Florida CraftArt which is located at 501 Central Avenue in St. Petersburg. Hours are Tuesday through Saturday, 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Florida CraftArt is a nonprofit organization founded in 1951 and headquartered in St. Petersburg. Its mission is to grow the statewide creative economy by engaging the community and advancing Florida’s fine craft artists and their work. Fine craft art is presented in its 2,500-square-foot retail gallery and curated exhibitions are featured in its adjacent exhibition gallery. Twenty artists’ studios are on the second floor in ArtLofts. Florida CraftArt is the only statewide organization offering artists a platform to show and sell their work.