Arts galore coming to annual SAP Arts Festival

By Sarah Clark and Kathy Henderson

The 54th St. Anthony Park Arts Festival will fill the neighborhood with arts galore on Saturday, June 3, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. This year’s festival will feature more than 60 juried artists, an extensive used book sale hosted by the St. Anthony Park Library and a plant sale.

New at this year’s festival: An expanded festival area including a portion of Luther Seminary’s lawn (corner of Como Avenue and Luther Place), which will host more family activities; a second stage for live music and expanded food and beverage selections.

The featured artists for 2023 are Amy Von Bergen (pottery), Paul Georgieff (forged kitchen knives) and Jennifer Levernier (metal jewelry).

Amy Von Bargen is a potter from Minneapolis who hand builds each piece she makes from stoneware slabs.

“After learning how to throw pots on the wheel, it was my first attempts at hand-building that really got me hooked on clay,” Amy said in her artist’s statement. “Suddenly I could make more interesting shapes and use lots of texture on the clay.”

All of Von Bargen’s pottery is fired to 2,200 degrees, resulting in durable, functional pieces.

“I like knowing that people use my pots to bring a sense of occasion to their everyday lives,” Von Bargen said.

In contrast to the supple clay that Von Bargen uses in her pottery art, the medium of artists Paul Georgieff and Jenny Levernieris is hard metal—but each uses it in totally different ways.

Once upon a time, knives—kitchen knives, hunting knives, fish filet knives, even professional chef knives—were thought of in terms of functionality. Brown handle. Black handle. Two or three metal rivets.

Today, while still producing functional products, artists like Paul Georgieff have taken their distinctively designed knives into the art marketplace.

Georgieff, will, according to the SAP Arts Festival website, be showing “a collection of unique paring knives, chef’s knives, and nakiris (Japanese vegetable cleavers). The knives will be clad in a variety of handle materials, including curly mango wood from Hawaii and domestic black walnut and maple.”

Finally, the festival will showcase the work of Minneapolis-based jewelry artist Jenny Levernieris, a familiar name to those who admire handcrafted jewelry and follow art fairs and craft council shows.

While her name may be familiar, her jewelry design is anything but static. Levernieris continually expands her repertoire with innovative styles and materials.

In her artist statement, Levernieris describes how her “current work focuses on combinations of stones; colors and patterns I feel go well together.

“More than matching in the traditional sense, I complement and contrast elements creating my vision.”

Visit sapfest.org for more information, a detailed schedule, a festival map or to make a donation.

Sarah CR Clark and Kathy Henderson are regular freelance writers for the Bugle and live in St. Paul.

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