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Autumn and Art festival: A touch of home

  • The Wichita Eagle
  • Published Saturday, Sep. 15, 2012, at 10:25 p.m.
  • Updated Saturday, Sep. 15, 2012, at 10:26 p.m.

Several local artists are adding flair and a touch of home to Wichita’s third annual Autumn and Art show and sale, which continues Sunday at Bradley Fair Parkway, 21st and Rock Road.

Steve Hauck said he stopped along a highway south of Chanute to photograph a farmhouse and saw a trio of rusted chairs abandoned in a tallgrass field.

So he snapped a picture.

It’s been a favorite among those who browsed his Autumn and Art tent this weekend because, he said, the image offers Kansans “a sense of home.”

The festival, which features artwork for sale in 13 categories by more than 80 artists nationwide, opens at 10 a.m. Sunday for its final day. The show closes at 5 p.m. It’s free to attend.

“We’ve seen these kinds of things as part of our lexicon and it invokes images of home, familiarity,” Hauck said of his chairs – several photographs of rusted furniture on a porch or lined up along a wall like aging soldiers.

Wichita artist Stephen Perry also said he draws his inspiration mostly from Kansas. His original prints, made from copperplate or solar etchings and ink, are rich with images of rural landscapes, farmhouses or streams running lazily through the Kansas prairie.

“Everywhere we go, we like driving the back roads,” he said. “We take photos everywhere we go and get out to see the scenery.”

And there’s plenty for the eyes to take in from Kansas artists, said Wichita Festivals president and CEO Janet Wright, who expects the art show and sale’s turnout to match last year’s total of 12,000 to 15,000 people.

There are carved wooden boxes by Wichitan Kenneth Lowrance and stunning local architecture captured in black and white by Wichita photographer Cary Conover – voted the festival’s favorite artist by attendees at Friday evening’s Patron Party; and geometric metal-and-resin jewelry by Yates Center couple Mike and Nichole Collins.

Prices ranges from several thousand dollars to the more-affordable sterling silver and gold jewelry by Wichitan Donna McAfee, which starts at under $100.

“It’s pretty diverse,” Wright said.

Reach Amy Renee Leiker at 316-268-6644 or aleiker@wichitaeagle.com. Follow her at www.twitter.com/amyreneeleiker.

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