Page 24

Avenue of Arts at Festival International de Louisiane By Danielle Ducrest • Photos by Denny Culbert, Courtesy of Festival International de Louisiane During Festival International de Louisiane, Parc Sans Souci becomes a hub of activity. Among the crowds, avenues of white canopies take shape, where fine artists and craftspeople exhibit their work. The arts market, known as Marché des Arts, is home to vendors from around Louisiana and all over the world. An average of 400,000 people roam downtown Lafayette during the five-day festival, but only 90 vendors are accepted to the Marché des Arts. This is not to be mistaken for the Marché du Monde, a separate arts market for 110 commercial and import vendors, which can be found a few blocks away. This year’s Marché des Arts will showcase ceramics, fiber art, jewelry, and more art and crafts, including pieces created by members of the Louisiana Crafts Guild (LCG). Applicants to the Marché des Arts are vetted by a jury panel, with the guild providing half of the jurors. Established in the 1990s, the guild has experience creating outdoor artisan exhibits. The guild’s greatest influence on Festival International occurs in the jurying process. Guild 24 April 2016

members and non-members can apply, but all applicants are held to the same expectations. “The people who help set up the base of this were adamant about having quality art products,” Miles Peterson, the president of the LCG, explains. “We jury everybody according to guild standard.”

This means that the vendors must meet similar requirements to applicants into the guild itself. The guild favors quality, creative expression and artistic excellence from artists and craftspeople. A range of mediums and categories are accepted, from ritual crafts to folk instrument making to glassmaking to woodworking. “It’s a pretty amazing variety of different things that are represented,” says Peterson. What may not be clear to guild applicants is that some types of art and crafts are not accepted, regardless of quality. “It depends on what medium they have,” says Peterson. “Whether they’re jewelers or potters, there are specific items for those types of crafts that we allow and encourage, and there are specific things that we don’t allow.” Among jewelry applicants, for example, bead

Overture Magazine

Overture April 2016  

Acadiana's Publication for the Arts

Overture April 2016  

Acadiana's Publication for the Arts

Advertisement