Artisans Make Fall Pilgrimmage Here

** Update:  The Festival runs again during 2010, on October 2nd and 3rd. **

We welcomed the arrival of artisans back to Montclair Village today, as they made their fall pilgrimmage to our sidewalks.  Montclair’s Fine Arts and Crafts Sidewalk Festival has returned in full force, and continues from 10am through 5pm tomorrow.

After spending a few hours walking around today, we can report there’s a nice mix of paintings, prints, pottery, glass, jewelry, metal sculptures, clothing and other unique items.  Here are a few things that caught my attention.

Pottery Art

While there are several pottery exhibitors, Mark Untener’s plate and bowl stood out from the crowd.  You can see some of the arts and crafts influence in them, but with a twist.  Mark has been making ceramics for 35 years, ever since he realized that pottery mattered more than his college biology major (email:

Fruit Portrait

Karen LeGault creates paintings and prints that seemed a little different too, and I asked her what influenced this fruit-on-vine print.  She explained her affinity for more intense, Western colors within a Chinese aesthetic.  Anyway, Karen’s art fits the bill for anyone who wants something calming (email:

Redwoods Zen

There are several escapist, acrylic paintings by Jane Kiskaddon, who uses an Airstream to travel.  So this meditator also uses a trailer to spend time in the local Redwoods, isn’t it great?  When Jane and I spoke, she explained that her art is mystical and uses this color palate pretty consistently (email:

Birdhouse in Garden

You’ll find “art-house” birdhouses on display in the village, courtesy of  re-use artist Ken Rhoads.  He salvages items and creates one-of-a-kind birdhouses that provide stylish shelter for your local avians.  Full disclosure is that I walked away with a rustic domicile, temporarily displayed in my garden (email:

Vibrant Quilt

Plus there are lovely quilts with unexpected colors and vibrancy!  Quilter Catherine Douat uses unique fabrics that make a difference, and can spend up to 50 hours on her fine hand-stitching per piece.  She also creates customized wedding and baby quilts, which are truly meant to be used (email:

Other interesting items?  Metal artist Christina de Lopez offers great rusted dogs and cats as well as brightly-colored insects (email:  Returnee Laura Blacona offers whimsical salt and pepper shakers (email:  Kristi Flynn has a huge display of pillar candles, and she’ll mix scents and colors just for you (email:

Anyway, make a little time to hit Montclair Village on Sunday and meet some of the juried artisans along Mountain, La Salle and Antioch.  With this fall mix of art and crafts, you don’t have to give up your first born to afford everything.  We think many items would be perfect for holiday gifts, if it’s possible to think that far ahead.

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