TRAVEL THERE: PUT IT ON YOUR BUCKET LIST
Remember that marvelous Scottsdale Visitors’ Guide I ordered online for free. Well, on the events page, they listed Celebration of Fine Art and a few pages over was a full page ad. From there I went to the celebrateart.com website and I immediately knew there was at least one thing I was not going to miss in Scottsdale.
Celebration of Fine Art
If art is your thing or one of your things, you need to plan a trip to Scottsdale during the Celebration of Fine Art. They have it every year during the months of January through March. It’s more than just another art show or gallery. One hundred artists come to Scottsdale and for three months they set up their studios right there in the big white tents.
What’s more, this is the art bargain of the world. Tickets are only $10 each and they will get you into the tents for the entire three months. Unfortunately, we were there such a short time, we only spent a few hours in the tents, but if I lived anywhere near there, I would probably be there every weekend. Even the parking is free. I’ve spent a whole lot more to get into an art event and have gotten a whole lot less out of it.
We loved this show. We walked in, paid for our tickets and before we could even get our bearings, we were overwhelmed by a larger than life statue of a Native American being carved at the first booth. For the next few hours, we walked awestruck from one booth to the next. In each, we were able to see the artist working away at something new. Bill was enchanted and stopped to chat at every booth.
I liked the fact that there was every sort of art you could imagine. Various mediums, from sculpture to painting to weaving. You name any material you want, from canvas to plastic, and someone was doing something with it or to it to make it art. There were modern deconstructed pieces cheek to jowl with classical figurative and landscape paintings. Too often you go to a show and there is booth after booth where everyone is virtually doing the same thing. That was certainly not the case here.
Another marvelous thing was the quality of artist’s work. I’ve been to juried shows where I wondered who the jury was. This show was the best of the best of the best. There just wasn’t anyone there that made me wonder how they got their spot. It was all obviously high quality with great artistic value.
Eventually, our senses were just worn out. We could not begin to take in even one more art piece or chat with one more artist. We were done, but we had not even scratched the surface. We walked back towards the entrance, making sure to pass by those artists who were our favorites.
We wanted to take something home from virtually every booth, but we managed to get out of the tent empty-handed. The price tags easily discouraged us from impulse shopping. It was fine art and the value was there, but we’re only visual collectors, in part because we just can’t afford to be otherwise.
Time to Check In
It was about time to check into the Westin, but we had a few errands to run. First of all, we needed water, but instead of picking up individual bottles at a convenience store, we found a grocery store and bought a gallon. It wouldn’t be our last gallon on this trip. The calories from Bill’s French Toast had all been used up, so he grabbed a burger at Jack in the Box.
I was on my last leg. We’d been up since the wee hours and while Mr. Bill can grab a nap sitting in a terminal or in an airline seat, it really doesn’t work for me. We navigated our way to the resort and got checked in, but we did run into a little problem there. Come back next week and I’ll tell you about it.