Demos at Art All Night 2011.
Posted by C Scheftic on 2011/05/05
I’m way behind schedule for meeting several deadlines, so I haven’t had time to go through my snapshots from Art All Night and try to assemble a bit of a story. But I figured I’d at least find and post a couple for now. This first one will confirm that we were there or, at least, listed as the “Precious Metal Clay Guild” on the big Thank-You Board. (Technically, we are the “Western PA Chapter of the Precious Metal Clay Guild” but what’s here is close enough!)
I got there a little before 6 pm and Donna arrived a few minutes after. We were scheduled to give demos until around 10 pm, though it was more like 10:30 when we actually finished up. We were in the same space our guild chapter had last year, just off to the side of the ramp that connects the two main buildings of the art show.
There seemed to be more lights in full operation than there’d been back in our corner last year! So our little tables were somewhat brighter than they’d been then, which made it a bit challenging to see the “glow” of pieces being torch-fired. But, only a little bit more and, once again, that burning binder and glowing metal served well to draw people over to see what was going on. We had a pretty steady flow of interested observers until, maybe around 8 pm, I began to notice a bit of a crowd building up in the aisle between us and the ramp.
At first, I just saw this guy from the back: he was also facing the ramp, trying to draw people down into “our” corner. Or, should I say, trying to get his, ah, “friend” to draw them down. Though coiled up in this shot, when I saw it stretched out it looked to be a least six feet long (maybe more, but definitely under eight).
That’s when the “aura” around us changed: I’m not trying to imply that it got better, or that it got worse, just that it changed. Some people came over because of the snake, and then stayed to see what we were doing. Others came over regardless of the snake, because they wanted to know what we were demonstrating.
I do know, however, that at least some people didn’t even see us because of the snake. Several of my neighbors, for one example: One mother stopped by to say hello, but I later found out that neither the father nor their children in that family had even seen me. He said, “As soon as I saw that snake, I just looked the other way, and headed the girls right over to some performers on the other side of the room.”
That’s too bad. Though I was too busy to get a chance to engage this fellow in conversation (and of course he disappeared right as we started to pack up our materials), from the little I was able to overhear off and on, he seemed to be doing a good job of trying to explain that snakes are a part of our ecosystem, that only a very few of them are dangerous while most are not, and that the majority of them would usually rather you just quietly pass them by and leave them alone … the same thing you would wish of them. Luckily, a lot of people were still able to walk past this pair–stopping to visit with them, or not, as they preferred–to see what we had going on.
Oh, and in that photo, you can see Donna, second from the left (and facing right), in the midst of a torch-firing demo. I couldn’t find a way to get both the snake and the torch in the same shot, so I just grabbed a shot from this angle and then went back to talking with folks who’d come over to see the metal clay display.
After we were all packed up, Donna left to get some sleep (she was heading down to the metal clay retreat sponsored by PMC Connection at Arrowmont, leaving at 7 am the next day). But I stayed and wandered around, looking at the art and talking with various people, for a couple more hours.
‘Twas a fun evening! I hope to find time to post a few notes on the show itself in about a week.