Art festivals take over downtown Ferndale this weekend

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What’s better than an art festival? Two, of course, and that’s what art lovers will find this weekend in downtown Ferndale.

On the west side of Woodward Avenue, visitors will find the Funky Ferndale Art Fair, while the DIY Street Fair takes over to the east. The combination will produce hundreds of artists and vendors and showcase an array of paintings, sculptures, jewelry, mixed media, functional art, crafts, live music, drinks and food trucks.

While arts and crafts are central to both events, Funky Ferndale is the more traditional of the two, which founder Mark Loeb described as a fine arts fair with a bold attitude, for people who didn’t realize that they loved art.

“You won’t see a bunch of still lifes that go well with your couch,” he said. “Instead, what you’ll see are images that will invite conversation when your friends are done, images that you can interpret differently at different times of your life’s day, and works of art wearables that will grab attention and won’t blend in.”

One such artist is Aaron Sadock, who creates his abstract paintings by combining gravity and music. After pouring his colors onto a canvas, Sadock uses gravity to distribute them to create his design, which is then placed over a large speaker where the sound vibrations further define the image.

Sadock said he loves hard-hitting rock music with lots of sonic dynamics, especially from musicians like Beastie Boys, Led Zeppelin, Jack White, Queens of the Stone Age, Rage Against the Machine and The Black Crowes.

“The beauty of it is in letting go of control,” he said. “You can guide the paint, but you can’t make it do something specific.”

The DIY Street Fair has more of a party atmosphere and celebrates those with a DIY spirit, said co-founder Krista Johnson. The event takes place later into the night and features a range of live music, as well as craft beers and spirits.

“The vibe is a bit more laid back on our end, so we work really well together,” she said.

Amy Gerhardt is one of the featured artists at the DIY Street Fair, with her work in nostalgia-based pop art, particularly 1990s pop culture. Her range of earrings, mugs, magnets , stickers, and keychains feature images and quotes ranging from TV shows like “Rugrats” and “Unsolved Mysteries,” to games like Nintendo and Oregon Trail, to toys like Polly Pocket and Tamagotchi.

“It makes people happy,” Gerhardt said. “I just like to make people laugh and remember things from their past.”

Both fairs will also offer a range of activities beyond art sellers. At Funky Ferndale, visitors will find an author tent where they can meet around 30 local authors. They can also go on a scavenger hunt to find over 20 images of the town’s mascot, the ‘Ferndalian’, for the chance to win a grand prize.

Live bands are a big draw for the DIY Street Fair, with headliners Haley Heynderickx, Clap Your Hands Say Yeah and Flobots and eight local bands including Passalacqua, The Doozers, Minihorse, Summer Like The Season, Jerry Dreams, Jack and the Bear, Checker and White Bee.

Loeb said the event is just a whole different take on an art fair.

“For people who love air fairs, they love it because they go to the same art fair all year, they could use something a little different,” he said. “For people who don’t like art fairs, they love it, because there are images that push them over the edge and help them relate to art a little better.”

Funky Ferndale Art Fair

Nine Mile in downtown Ferndale, west of Woodward

3-7 p.m. Friday; 10am-7.30pm Saturday; 11am-6pm Sunday

DIY street fair

Nine Mile in downtown Ferndale, east of Woodward

6 p.m.-midnight Friday; 11am-midnight Saturday; 11am-9pm Sunday

Both events are free. Visit www.funkyferndaleartfair.com and www.ferndalediy.com

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