It seems like lately consumers are looking for experiences when it comes to parting with their hard-earned cash. Mike Upp, co-chair of the Sedona Visual Artists’ Coalition Open Studios Tour, understands that, and it’s one of the reasons he thinks the tour has steadily grown in popularity. Not only does Open Studios return April 28-30 for its 14th year, SVAC has also added a fall Open Studios Tour, which will take place Nov. 10-11. This month’s tour will feature 59 artists in 50 studios in Sedona, the Village of Oak Creek, Cornville, Cottonwood, Clarkdale and Camp Verde.
“When I first became involved in Open Studios in 2013, I had the only studio outside of Sedona,” says Mike, who has a ceramics studio in Cornville. “This year, we have 17 studios outside of Sedona. Expanding our footprint takes the quality of art up a notch because it gives us a broader cross section of artists.”
Art lovers will be able to browse studios and meet painters, ceramicists, photographers, jewelers, sculptors and fiber and mixed-media artists during the three-day event. Get an intimate look at how art is created, talk to the artists about their techniques and inspiration, and buy work direct from the source. Participating artists will also be selling raffle tickets ($1 each) that will benefit SVAC’s scholarship program.
“Part of Sedona Visual Artists’ Coalition’s mission is arts education,” says Mike. “Many of our artists want to educate people not just about what they do but about their art form. Open Studios is a wonderful opportunity to do that. It’s about shopping for art, but it’s also about learning more about the mediums you admire.”
Brochures with a complete list of participating artists, including a map, can be found at hotels, restaurants and visitors centers around the Verde Valley. They can also be downloaded on the SVAC website. After you take the tour, participate in an online survey about your experience for a chance to win a $200 gift certificate to one of the artist’s studios. – Erika Ayn Finch. Photo of Sedona Visual Artists’ Coalition.
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