Marion Arts Festival 2011

by Kathleen Huebener in Works in Progress

The art news is out! This Saturday May 21 there will be a huge art happening here in Marion, Iowa. Now in its 19th year, the Marion Arts Festival keeps reeling in the accolades and more importantly, brings in the audiences to enjoy fantastic art! Although, nearly 350 artists from all over the world clamored for entrance to this elite juried festival, only 50 artists landed the coveted placement in this outstanding festival. In fact, the 2011 Art Fair Source Book deems this festival as the top-juried one-day show in all the USA for its size! I am very proud of that fact, since I was Chairman of the Festival Board for a few years and served on the board before that. It takes many people and businesses to make this festival the huge success that it is.


The artwork of the festival features blown glassware, pottery, paintings, photography, metal works, fine woodworks, and jewelry, just to mention a few. There is more! The Marion Heritage Center is sponsoring the highly popular Marion Friends and Neighbors Art Show at the same time. Many of the Creative Artists have entered artwork in this prestigious art show. I have two art pieces in this show myself. The Center is located right next to the city square, the location of the festival and all of its excitement. True, the footprint of the city square is relatively small (perfect for 50 artists), but the festival’s strong appeal is dynamic! Last year even with the rain, 20,000 people attended the festival. Most of the booths sold out of artwork by the end of the day!


At the festival, there will be demonstrations of blowing glass and other art mediums. There will be opportunities for visitors to try their hands at working clay on the pottery wheels. There are food vendors, music, Empty Bowls fundraiser, and a 5K race and walk. Moreover, this action-filled fun-packed artsy event is all here in downtown Marion. It is a great time to be an artist and to partake of this marvelous event!