Artist Market: Experience the creativity
Thanks to VSA Arts of Georgia—our Artist Market sponsor—the area's most celebrated artists with disabilities will feature an eclectic mix of original, unforgettable artistry. From hand-dyed fabrics and pottery to jewelry and apparel, their amazing works will be available for appreciation and purchase.
The VSAarts of Georgia is a nonprofit arts organization with a thirty-five-year history of service to more than 160,000 Georgians with disabilities and low income each year. Its vision is a world in which the arts are accessible to all.
When you purchase a one-of-a kind gift from the Abilities Expo Artist Market, the proceeds from the sales will benefit the participating artists and VSAarts of Georgia.
Atikaart – Marquetta Bell Johnson (Hand-dyed fabrics, quilts, collectibles):
Marquetta Bell Johnson was born into a family of tailors and quilters, providing a rich environment which fostered her creativity as a youth. She is a self-taught artist and creates hand-dyed textiles, quilts and collectibles.
Marquetta’s work has been published extensively and featured on HGTV’s “Crafters Coast to Coast.” She is also the author of Hand-Dyed Quilts, a “how-to” book about quilting and dyeing. Most notable among her commissions is a Textile Mural for the Department of the Interior in our nation’s capital.
Marquetta considers herself a community-based artist who uses her creativity to impact the world in a positive way. According to her, “Every stitch I make is an act of love with the potential to foster harmony, well-being and peace.”
Visit her online at www.atikaart.com.
Studio LeBrun – Sandra and David LeBrun (Jewelry, pottery, clothing)
Studio LeBrun is the umbrella for a number of different artistic ventures by Sandra and David LeBrun including jewelry, pottery and the “Morph Me” custom line of clothing and accessories. You’ll love the elegant, affordable jewelry made with sterling silver, semi-precious stones, freshwater pearls. The colorful busts, bowls, mirrors, mugs, pins, in folk art style will accent any room. And don’t miss the opportunity to deck yourself out with “Morph Me” scarves, t-shirts, slouch bags and wheelchair bags made with recycled and felted materials.
Sandra is self-taught and finds pottery to be healing and therapeutic. She relishes the entire process or working with clay, from playing with it, to shaping it, to drying it to glazing it. “It is all a continuous meditation then the object takes over and tells you when it's done,” she says. “Opening the kiln is like Christmas day.” Sandra also enjoys painting, knitting, jewelry, using mixed media and recycling old wool sweaters into beautiful scarves.
David, also self-taught, is a 52-year-old potter and painter. A folk-artist by nature, he is influenced and inspired by great works of art that filter through his imagination. While his preference for art varies widely, he tends to concentrate a genre, for instance, Haitian art for a period of time before moving on to Modern, Great Masterpieces and many others. He has a keen imagination and sense of humor which he lends regularly to his craft and his choices of finishes are usually bold and colorful. “I want people to really love a piece when they buy it,” he said. “I want people to know that they have purchased a part of me that’s theirs, forever, and that it represents the best I have to offer.”
Sachiko Kogure (Origami)
Sachiko Kogure is an Origami (Japanese Paper Folding Craft) Artist who creates original, beautiful origami with a profound sense of equilibrium. She feels great joy and satisfaction when her hard work is rewarded by people who smile in fascination at her creations. She will display Origami Christmas Trees which add beauty and holiday spirit, cranes, swans, penguins, dragonflies, Japanese Washi paper screens, flowers, wreathes, framed origami works, and more. For more information, visit www.origamichristmastree.com.
Bill Whitlock (Painting)
A 69-year-old, self-taught "Artist of Light," Bill Whitlock expresses the divine with color in Tissue Paper Collage and Watercolor and Ink. He sees his work as “an expression of thanks to the universe to be able to bring life to others through my art.” According to him, the only disability in life is the notion of "Can't."