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Finding art and music in Frederick

June 05, 2007|by JESSI FULTON

FREDERICK, Md. - When you first arrive at the Frederick Festival of the Arts there are colorful carnival tents and paddle boats greeting you. The smell of freshly baked treats entices you, as does the atmosphere of old and new art joining to form cultural magic.

The Fredrick Festival of the Arts featured two days of art, music, food and fun in Frederick, on Saturday, June 2, and Sunday, June 3.

Artists showcased their work in booths along Carroll Creek Linear Park in downtown Frederick. Artists created things like pottery, weaving, metalwork, jewelry, painting and pewter molding. Artists started as young as 16 and some as late as 45.

Bob Bauers of Philadelphia works in metal. He works mostly making realistic objects, but enjoys abstract as well. His work gives a feel of simplicity, with a modern edge and a dash of fun. He explained some of his work.

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"There really is no technique for metalwork," he said. "Once you know the basics, you just have to have a good imagination."

When I was exploring the booths - there were more than 100 - I stumbled upon John Fouquart's booth. It was amazing. Everything was made of pewter.

He lives by this quote: "Have nothing in your houses that you do not know to be useful, or believe to be beautiful."

Pewter is a metal which has a low melting point and is more malleable than most metals.

"I started [pewter] doing restoration work," he said. "After looking at them, I started reading about it."

Fouquart's items have a medieval theme. Most carry a Celtic design six to seven centuries old. The work is lovely and seems both ancient and ageless - the essence of pewter.

Jeweler William Greenwood lives in Woodstock, N.Y., and shows his work internationally. He makes any type of wearable jewelry. His pieces are gorgeously detailed and are works of art. And sometimes clever.

"I started [making jewelry] in college," he said. "I had a nervous habit of twirling my rings around. Originally, I wanted to make a ring that could have three faces. Then, I ended up making nine faces!" Greenwood showed a ring with two parts that rotate separately. One piece had eyes and noses; the other had a combination of mouths.

His prices range from $35 to $10,000. Greenwood still has a habit of twirling his rings, except now he does it for a living. (To see more of his work go to www.greenwooddesigns.com)

Frederick native Gary Schwartz was one of many musicians performing at the festival. A frequent festival musician, he played a harpsichord modeled after one created in 1610. He talked about the history of the instrument and how it is related to the piano.

"The main difference between the piano and the harpsichord is that in the harpsichord the keys are plucked and not hammered like the piano," Schwartz said.

The Frederick Festival of the Arts is a great experience. Make plans to attend the next one in early June 2008.

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