The League of Longfellow Artists (LoLa) invites you to its third annual art crawl, Saturday and Sunday, August 27 and 28, from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. both days. The crawl takes place throughout the Greater Longfellow area, including the Standish and Ericsson neighhborhoods, and features a broad range of creative arts such as painting, sculpture, photography, pottery, weaving, jewelry, textiles, video, and more.
In a summer filled with art fairs, the LoLa Art Crawl is unique. It is open to all levels of artists, from those who enjoy creating art as a pastime to those who earn a living from their art. The only requirement to be an exhibitor is to live and/or work in the geographical area (Mississippi River on the east, Cedar Avenue on the west, the Midtown Greenway on the north, and the Crosstown Highway on the south) and to pay a 25-dollar entrance fee.
The LoLa Art Crawl is artist-run. Local artists plan and promote the crawl. They open their homes (and sometimes their businesses) for the event, which gives the crawl a friendly, neighborly atmosphere. You’ll be able to visit with the artists and ask questions about materials and techniques. There will also be demonstrations at some of the sites. Many neighborhood businesses participate either as exhibiting sites or as supportive businesses making LoLa maps available.
Meet Artist Bob Schmitt
One of the artists you’ll have an opportunity to meet on the LoLa Art Crawl is Bob Schmitt (pictured, above). Bob is the owner of Laughing Waters Studio at 3718 E. Minnehaha Pkwy. He is a graphic designer, Chinese landscape painter, calligrapher, and teacher.
Laughing Waters Studio is also Bob’s home. Step into Bob’s living room and you’ll also be in his work space, gallery, and classroom. He’s converted his porch into a small shop, where he sells paintings, prints, and notecards of his work. His charming backyard garden is a work of art in itself.
Bob is one of the founders of the League of Longfellow Artists and an administrator of the LoLa Art Crawl. He says it has been “pure joy” for him to be part of this grassroots effort to raise the visibility of local artists and to build a sense of community among them.
The LoLa Art Crawl has shown steady growth since its beginning in 2009. The first year there were 46 artists, the second year there were 84 artists, and this year there will be over 100 artists. LoLa has uncovered an amazing amount of creativity in South Minneapolis!
With so much art to see and enjoy, you’ll want to plan your day carefully. Many of the artists exhibit in clusters, and this year there will be about 60 sites. You might decide to organize your stops by location or by type of art. You can find a map and a guide to exhibitors at www.lolaartcrawl.com or at supporting businesses after Aug. 10. Look for the yellow LoLa signs the weekend of the crawl.
There’s no cost to go on the crawl. Of course, you may want to purchase something you see; and you might want to stop for refreshments in a restaurant or coffee shop along the way.
The 2011 LoLa Art Crawl is a must-see-and-do event. Who knows? It might inspire you to release your inner artist.