4th annual Waterfront Art Festival this weekend

By Kevin Chaney | Jul 11, 2012
Courtesy of: Tomas Vrba Tomas Vrba works on one of his art pieces at a carving competition. Some of Vrba's artwork will be available at the art festival.

Art and sunshine meet again with the return of the Mukilteo Arts Guild’s Waterfront Art Festival this weekend.

The fourth annual Waterfront Art Festival is scheduled for Saturday, July 14, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and Sunday, July 15, and from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. at Lighthouse Park. It is a free event.

The festival, which is co-sponsored by the City of Mukilteo, showcases many art forms, such as paintings, sculptures, photography, clothing and accessories, pottery and jewelry. There will also be woodcarving demonstrations, live music and children’s activities.

"This year we are focusing of artists locally and internationally,” said Mukilteo Arts Guild President Christine Awad Schmalz. “I am very impressed with the quality of fine art that will be exhibited at this year's Waterfront Art Festival."

A lot of familiar faces will be at the festival this year, as well as some new ones.

New to the festival is artist Yukie Adams, who specializes in Japanese mixed media and Native American art.

“I married an Alaskan Tlingit Indian,” she said, adding that soon after she gained an interest in the art of his heritage.

After her husband passed away in the early 1990s, she continued to learn and work with the Northwest Native art form. She has been an artist for 22 years.

Another newcomer is Austrian wood carver Tomas Vrba.

“I was originally trained as a fine arts restorer,” Vrba said. “Carving was just a hobby.”

It wasn’t until Vrba competed in a chainsaw carving contest in Oregon, that he decided to make woodcarving his profession. He has been carving for three years, but has been involved with wood and stone for 17 years.

Other featured artists include painter Carol “CJ” Elsip, whose artwork is showcased on the festival poster, and Ken Slade, who creates fine silver and gemstone jewelry.

“The Waterfront Art Festival is probably the youngest festival in the Puget Sound region,” Schmalz said. “It has been evolving for four years, and will continue to grow in popularity as more people begin to see us back each year.”

Watch a preview of the art available at the festival on YouTube. Search “Mukilteo Waterfront Art Festival.”

Proceeds from the festival – made through artist booth fees – go toward the guild’s scholarship fund for high school seniors from the Mukilteo School District pursuing the arts in higher education.

Kevin Chaney is an intern for the Mukilteo Beacon.

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