Festival Showcases Local Artists

Dacula glass cutter among those with works on display.

Arts is as diversified an occupation or category as sports or business. And that diversity was evident Saturday at Town Center Park in Suwanee.

There was Anita Stewart of Suwanee, who has been painting for 30 years or so. She was one of several artists participating in Arts In The Park.

"I like to travel and paint," Stewart said at her booth  Saturday. Her painting "Bougainvillea," done in South Africa, was on display along with works done in Panama and Italy. Stewart's studio is in Buford.

Katherine Smith, a Central Gwinnett arts teacher who lives in Decatur, was busy squeezing and tossing ceramic clay to make a sculpture. A good arts teacher knows that ceramic clay comes out of the earth, as opposed to polymer clay, which is man made.

Smith noted that polymer clay holds detail better, and is popular in the movie industry. The sculpture she was working on Saturday would take about two hours to finish, including time in a kiln.

There was Mike Bennett of Dacula, who is a regular at art shows with his glass cutting. He explained Saturday that he was making a "fused glass dish" and that the glass goes into a kiln twice after it is cut. "It melts until it fuses," he explained. "We do several at a time."

And there was Carla Smith of Lawrenceville, who was spending time painting sculptures called "butterfly kisses." It involves adding colored paint to a bland base.

"I'm a newcomer," Smith said Saturday, noting that she took up the activity as therapy. She started by painting wooden butterflies in her bathroom. "But I ran out, so I started painting angels."


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