MARQUETTE - All manner of handcrafted art was on display in Peter White Public Library Saturday for the 12th annual city of Marquette Arts and Culture Center Holiday Art Show.
More than 28 vendors packed into the community arts room in the library to take part in the juried show, which was widely anticipated by local residents.
"It's wonderful to be able to buy local art as Christmas gifts," said Tiina Harris, community services manager and director of the Arts and Culture Center. "There was a line out the door this morning of people waiting to come in and that's always wonderful. (The show offered) a cross section of different artists in our community."
Cindy Wedig arranges mugs at her booth in the city of Marquette Arts and Culture Center’s 12th annual Holiday Art Show Saturday. (Journal photo by Jackie Stark)
The vendors came from as far away as the Keweenaw Peninsula, offering shoppers a variety of artwork, from water color paintings to handcrafted pottery. Much of the artwork was inspired by the Upper Peninsula, which was itself represented in a number of artistic forms.
Harris said the Holiday Art Show was a great way to showcase local artists that don't have their work on display anywhere else.
"This is an opportunity to see artists that don't sell their work in town, necessarily," Harris said. "It's good exposure for them, and we need to support them. It's important that we show their work. It's important to continually remind people of who's up here, who's new. Some of the artists (in the show) have been working at their art for many years ... but some are newer."
One couple, Kelly and Jason Limberg, recently moved to the U.P. from Indiana and are using their natural surroundings in Skandia as inspiration in their artwork.
Kelly Limberg is a jeweler and metalsmith, working primarily with silver and copper. Her husband is a draftsman, using mostly graphite or colored pencils in his work.
"A lot of people are noticing we're new to the area and haven't seen us," Kelly Limberg said of their first time being in the Holiday Art Show.
"It seems like there are a lot of people that are interested and want to be talkative," Jason Limberg said.
Other vendors, such as Cindy Wedig, a ceramics artist from Gwinn, have been to the show in years past. She said this year's show was a little slower than others, but said the competition of other similar shows as well as the economy were contributing factors.
"People's budgets are less than in the past, but I do think they appreciate (locally made items)," Wedig said. "They don't even walk in the door if they don't appreciate homemade items and supporting local artists."
The Holiday Art Show is the only show Wedig participates in as a vendor throughout the year.
Harris said the show has become a staple in the local holiday season.
"It's an annual tradition," Harris said. "There are groups of women, and men too, I'm sure, but definitely groups of women that make it their annual shopping tradition."
Jackie Stark can be reached at 906-228-2500, ext. 242.