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May 24, 2017

With Brass Band right around the corner and the weather (fingers crossed) looking good, let’s take a look at some of the remaining artists and their artwork. Soon, you’ll have more than just my words illustrating their work, their themes and what they hope to express! You’ll have their artwork, which will surely speak more brilliantly than my descriptions.

Clay Thurston, http://www.gabbf.org/speaker/clay-thurston/, has literally traveled the world as a wildlife and nature photographer for the past 30 years. His booth at the Great American Art Festival will let you travel with him from the comfort of Danville KY. We hope you take the time to visit and view his artwork. His current favorite subject matter is birds, but he’ll have a little bit of everything in his booth. Fawn Greer owns Dewdrop Pottery, https://www.facebook.com/pg/Dewdropartmudlovin/about/?ref=page_internal, and joins us from her home and studio in Corbin, KY. She crafts handmade items of beauty and function including apple backers, pitchers, mugs, and lemon juicers! As with many of our artists fill free to talk with her about custom orders. As a theatre artist, I am more than used to collaborating on artistic projects, but when I saw that Sara and Brian Turner would be exhibiting at the Art Show, I was intrigued. The artist duo has owned and operated Cricket Press since 2003 and will be sharing their printmaking with us at the Brass Band Festival, http://www.cricket-press.com/. Brad Bickel is a jewelry artist working in glass creating unique, one-of-a-kind pieces. He creates a special texture in the glass that mimics stone veins. Take a moment to look at his Facebook page to see the process described, https://www.facebook.com/bradbickelglass/. Have you ever considered furniture as artwork? If you haven’t, now might be the time. Darin Caldwell, who grew up right here in Boyle County, will be joining us. Darin sees the beauty in wood and seeks to highlight that beauty in each piece he designs, http://www.darincaldwelldesign.com/.

As an arts educator for almost 25 years, how and why people make art fascinates me. Why this medium, what that subject matter, what are you expressing? I’m also often amazed at how artwork is used to celebrate important life moments – special songs are written for graduation ceremonies, decorations become artwork at weddings and the structure of special ceremonies is choreographed to emphasize certain essential moments. It’s been a pleasure looking through these artist’s work and sharing a bit about their work with you. There are a few more artists to highlight before the Brass Band Festival begins! Looking forward to sharing them with you and to seeing you at the GABBF!

All for Arts and Art for All!

May 14, 2017

Last month I had the unique experience of visiting the home of a collector of contemporary art. The collection brought beauty and meaning to their home. Through conversations with the owners I began to understanding how the artwork brought beauty, meaning and value to their lives. Visiting the collection put us in the position of viewing artwork in someone’s home and the meaning it can have there, which is much more personal than viewing artwork in a museum. It was part of an arts education conference I was privileged to attend. I found myself engaging with the experience long after the visit, throughout the conference and later as I contemplated the meaning of art in our lives, the lives of our students and in our local and global communities.

Collecting artwork, for both display and function in one’s home has as many meanings as there are collectors. Some of us might have a piece or two and not even really consider ourselves collectors. Some of us have made the conscious choice to follow a particular artist, type of artwork, or historical period of art. Choosing artwork is personal and often emotional. The artwork might connect us with a memory, a person or time in our lives that we want to remember. We might choose a work of art because it brightens our surroundings or makes our home a lovelier place to be. It might be a wearable piece of artwork or something we can sit on, or eat or drink from.

The artists chosen for the Great American Art Festival will be displaying works of art that speak to that need for beauty, diversity and meaning that we want in our surroundings. Today, and in my next post I’ll feature the remaining artists chosen specifically for this year’s Festival, http://www.gabbf.org/festival-visual-artists/. As with anyone making a purchase of a piece of artwork the deciding factor is you, what has meaning and beauty for you. How can artwork express a part of your life, and bring thoughtfulness and understanding to your world.

Susan Black is a local photographer living in Lancaster who sees her world through the lens of a camera. She had always dreamed of becoming a photojournalist and now her photography is both her avocation and vocation. Susan’s photography takes great joy in the natural surroundings of Kentucky and her lens picks out the small details of environments, http://susanblackphotography.zenfolio.com/. Jeremy Ashcroft, from Logansport AL via Indiana, also works in photography and mixed media. His favorite subject matter is “Found Art” and is finds himself drawn to rustic everyday items that often go unnoticed until a photographers lens draws those details to our attention, http://www.jeremyashcraft.artspan.com/home. Painter Brendan Cody, describes his work as Contemporary Realism, working with bright color and bold composition. In his artwork Brendan hopes seeks to reveal a subject’s inner workings through exploration of their outward aspects, http://brendancody.wixsite.com/brendancody. Artist Stacy Chinn creates wearable works of art through her jewelry designs. Stacy is inspired by the “rustic beauty of the Bluegrass” producing jewelry and more in her studio/store in Lexington, MADEKY, http://www.madeky.com/index.html. Kris Grenier, is a fiber artist and adventurer who call Cynthiana, KY home. In her studio, she captures her favorite backpacking and peakbagging in her wool “paintings”, https://wanderstruckstudio.com/. Through her artwork, she seeks to make images from her travels tangible. Danville and Garrard County Artist Brandon Long is a multi-media and multidisciplinary artist whose works spans collage, instrument making, murals, sculpture making and more. One of his most recent exhibits “Recycling” featured recycled assemblage artworks, https://artofbrandonlong.wordpress.com/.

How does art speak to you?


A Brass Style Birthday: 225 years young

May 08, 2017

The Festival kicks off this year on the same day that our great state of Kentucky turns 225 years old.  Constitution Square in downtown Danville will host a party celebrating this historic event.  The party begins at 11:00 am on June 1st, kicking off the Brass Band day, while celebrating Constitution Square and bringing a festive Kentucky spirit to the start of the Festival weekend.

There are many things to enjoy at this celebratory event including a toast to Kentucky provided by our local Wilderness Trail Distillery, a string band performing, and re-enactors who will be in the park depicting the history of the late 1700 and 1800s.

When asked about the importance of this event, Judge Harold McKinney stated, “The celebration of the 225 is an opportunity to highlight again the role Boyle county played in the formation of this great Commonwealth .  We truly are the Cradle of the Commonwealth or the Birthplace of Kentucky. This community will relish the opportunity to say to all Kentuckians, “Welcome home Kentucky!”

Welcome home indeed! So join us in celebrating this great city, county, and entire state as we kick off the Festival in a truly special and historic way with this 225 event at 11:00 am June 1st at Constitution Square.  As Jennifer Kirchner said in her interview with the Advocate-Messenger about this event, join us and be “historically bold,” and celebrate all that there is to be proud of in our Commonwealth.

GABBF – All For Art And Art For All!

Apr 18, 2017

Did you know that the Great America Brass Band Festival is much more than music on the main stage? You probably have experienced some of those events: the Great American Swing Dance Fest, Saturday’s children’s activities, and certainly the Saturday morning parade. Another part of the Festival is the Great American Art Festival – why visual art at a music festival? Simply put, the organizers believe in art, all types of art, and having a juried art festival makes the art festival a fuller, richer experience. So whether you might be interested in purchasing a piece of art or simply need to stretch your legs, make your way to College Street alongside the Norton Center for the Arts to experience the 18 artists who will be exhibiting and selling their artwork. You might have a conversation with local Danville artist Paul Muth, who works in clay and runs a local studio, https://www.facebook.com/SugarGrovePottery/. While you’re there stop and see June Pryer, http://www.facebook.com./jandjartsbyjunepryor, a self-taught painter who is inspired by the beauty she sees around her. If you or your special someone is craving wearable artwork, Kelli Clark, who hails from Clarksville IN, will be there with her one-of-a-kind earrings, bracelets and necklaces, http://www.jewelrybykelli.com/. Troy Glasgow will be visiting from Memphis TN, with his unique photography the focuses your eyes on people, places, music, food, and life, http://www.troyglasgow.com/. Visual Art can leave you asking questions as you experience the world through the artist’s interpretation of beauty, life, form and function. Our artists love to converse, love to hear your perspective, and just plain love art! Take a walk over to their booths; you may find yourself coming back more than once as you experience yet another side of the Great American Brass Band Festival!

Art Festival

Apr 10, 2017

GABBF – All For Art And Art For All!

Scott Adams, the creator of the Dilbert comic strip once said “Creativity is allowing yourself to make mistakes. Art is knowing which ones to keep.” Our GABBF’s fearless leader, Niki Kinkade and her band of GABBF merrymakers, came up with this germ of a creative idea almost two years ago, and this year we’re excited to feature eighteen artists whose work ranges from photography to jewelry to painting to print-making to sculpture to woodworking! The Great American Art Festival is certainly a keeper and back for its second year! Over the next couple of months leading up to the Festival we’ll feature information about the artists and their artwork! We hope to peak your curiosity and inspire you to stroll through their booths. The diversity of their work, subject matter and medium promises to intrigue both art and music lovers. Whether you’re looking for that perfect piece that will help you remember this year’s Great American Brass Band Festival, a special gift for a loved-one or for yourself, or you just need to stretch your legs from sitting at on the lawn listening to the wonderful GABBF musical acts – this year’s artist’s won’t disappoint! So join us starting Saturday immediately following the parade and again on Sunday for the Great American Art Show set up along College St. You can still hear the music while you browse our outstanding local and regional artists! Check back here for additional information on our artists and their work!  Click here for more details.

Brass News

VIP Brass Pass

Jan 19, 2017

We have attendees who have been coming to the Festival for 20+ years and those who come and it is their very first time.  But everyone seems to agree that this event is truly unique, filled with charm and magical.

Our Brass Pass program brings patrons an added level of comfort and enjoyment.  Benefits include, preferred parking, access to the hospitality room and discounted merchandise.

Please click here for details and to register for the Brass Pass experience.  Limited number of Brass Passes available so do not hesitate.

Brass News

2017 Line-Up

Dec 20, 2016

Announcing the line up for the28th annual Great American Brass Band Festival, June 1-4, 2017.
Celebrating the Roaring Twenties.

Boston Brass, Boston, MA
Jens Lindemann, Los Angeles, CA
Wycliffe Gordon, Lexington, KY
The Rodney Marsalis Philadelphia Big Brass, Philadelphia, PA
100th Army Band, Fort Knox, KY
202nd Army Band, Frankfort, KY
8Up Brass Band of the 100th Army Band, Fort Knox, KY
Advocate Brass Band, Danville, KY
Circle City Sidewalk Stompers, Indianapolis, IN
Chicago Footwarmers, Lexington, KY
London Citadel Band, London, Ontario
Lowdown Brass Band, Chicago, IL
Saxton’s Cornet Band, Frankfort, KY
Storyville Stompers, New Orleans, LA

Student Ensembles
University of Alabama Trombone Choir (Affiliated with University of Alabama)
Grant County Brass Choir (Affiliated with Grant County High School)
Bourbon Boys Quintet (Affiliated with Northern Kentucky University)
North Fulton Trombone Cartel (Affiliated with several local schools in the GA area)
Limestone College Tuba-Euphonium Ensemble (Affiliated with Limestone College)
Merit Brass Ensemble (Affiliated with Merit School of Music)
Powerhouse Brass (Affiliated with Pritchard Music)
Rose Street Brass (Affiliated with University of Kentucky)

Festival Events

Food Vendor 2017 App Available

Dec 20, 2016

Calling all Food Vendors, the 2017 application process is open. Deadline is March 15th.

Click for the PDF