TAFA: The Textile and Fiber Art List

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

LowerTown Art & Music Festival: A Great Time to Visit Paducah!

Paducah in Western Kentucky

May 23 & 24
Memorial Day Weekend

Doing anything this coming weekend? Feel like a road trip? Wondering about the Artist Relocation Program in Paducah? Aaaaaahhhhh...... Yes, there is a festival and this is a great time to visit Paducah! All of nature is in full expression of itself: trees, flowers, and anything else that is green is growing, growing. The LowerTown Galleries have their red carpets spread out, everyone decked out in their best, celebrating this wonderful community and all the talent that, with the green, abounds.

LowerTown? Yes, Paducah, a small city in Western Kentucky, has an artist's community. LowerTown is a neighborhood adjacent to the downtown business district that was designated by the City as artist friendly. The City, along with Paducah Bank, enticed artists from all over the country to come in and revitalize a formerly depressed and forlorn neighborhood. The response was met by talent from all over the country. Painters, printers, fiber artists, quilters, and others following a muse came and settled here in the last seven years or so. Most have a wonderful sense of humor and generosity that helps unify the community into a viable, workable entity. Cooperation and respect, enjoyment of each other's work and a seasoned understanding of all it takes to build a presence all help to bind this group together. And, this weekend, Memorial Day, celebrates this wonderful group of people through the LowerTown Art & Music Festival. The following video by Aynex Mercado, founder of Paducah Fiber Artists, interviews a few of the artists in this neighborhood:

I wrote about the Festival last year in this blog. Click here to see the article and photos. This year the set up is a little different, focusing on more local artists rather than those from out of town. Live music promises to be fun and all the galleries will have special highlights during the festival.

I will be at HeART of Healing Gallery, doing Mehndi! Yes, it's henna season again. Here's an older picture of me with some of my cousins at a family reunion. I thought they would either think it was a really weird thing to do or they would love it. Everybody lined up to get their temporary and painless tattoo!

Rachel Biel Taibi, henna artist,
at a family reunion in Mondovi, WI.

While you are waiting for your henna to dry, you will want to explore HeART of Healing's wonderful colleciton of Kuna molas, Chinese Peasant Paintings, vinatage kimono, and paper cuts. Oh, there is more than that! Those are just some of the treasures offered by Dr, Christi Bonds Garrett!

Ah, and one more treat! My good friend, Abdul Wardak of Afghan Tribal Arts, will take over the parking lot at HeART of Healing with his carpets, beads and textiles. He truly has an amazing collection of all things Central Asian, so if you have the same lust I do for this region, do not miss this! Abdul was my partner in my last store in Chicago, Dara Tribal Village. Here is a funny photo of him, trying to look mean (he has a great sense of humor, a big teaser!) that I took of him at his house in Arlington Heights, a suburb of Chicago.

Abdul Wardak of Afghan Tribal Arts, being funny.

7th St. and Monroe. 11PM-8PM on Saturday and 11PM-5PM on Sunday. Remember that and come see us! We, and all the others in LowerTown, promise you a wonderful weekend in Paducah, Kentucky!

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“Whatever you say, say it with conviction.”

(Both by the master, Mark Twain)

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