Artists and artisans showcase their work in Marion

Jul 6, 2019

MARION — In downtown Marion on Saturday, art enthusiasts could view and buy ergonomic utensils, surreal photographs, upcycled clothing and colorful fiberware at the Marion Arts Center’s Arts in the Park

Artists and artisans showcased a variety of work on the corner of Main and Spring Streets on July 6. 

Artist Lauren Zaknoun of Wareham showcased a variety of work ranging from oil paintings to conceptual photography. A photograph showing an arm hanging out of an apple basket, as well as one showing hands holding rose petals with the thorns projecting out from the hands themselves are part of a series titled “One Hundred Nights” where she created a new conceptual photograph each day for 100 days. Zaknoun said she uses photoshop to compound multiple photographs into one original surrealistic image.

“I’m just always thinking, I’m always trying to think of something original,” Zaknoun said of her inspiration and creative process.

Michael Pietragalla is a furniture maker by trade. As an artisan, he uses leftover and recycled wood from his furniture projects to create handcrafted utensils. Pietragalla showcased a selection including  cheese knives, cutting and sushi boards, and chopsticks. The craftsman said he puts special attention into ensuring that his items are ergonomic, and has both right and left handed utensils available for sale. Pietragalla’s workshop is located in Space 406 at Hatch Street Studios, 88 Hatch Street in New Bedford. 

Pietragalla wasn’t the only one to repurpose materials for his craft. Noah Boisvert uses the process of “upcycling” to create a variety of clothes ranging from mittens to skirts. Boisvert and his mother MaryLynne of BH Upcycled Designs, based in Bristol Connecticut, buy old, sometimes damaged clothes from thrift stores to use their fabric to make new and unique fashion. Boisvert works out of a home studio for about 60 hours during the week and sells his products on the weekend, often traveling across New York and New England in search of clientele.

Westport native Harmony Winters draws inspiration from the ocean to make jewelry from sterling silver, 18 karat gold, opals, and sea glass. Winters also gathers her own sea salt by placing seawater in a shallow pan and heating it in an oven at a temperature of 150 degrees Fahrenheit to evaporate the water, leaving behind crystals of salt. As part of her showcase at Arts in The Park, Winters placed a selection of sea glass rings in a container of her sea salt.

Erin Hazlett of The Violet Orange in Barrington Rhode Island places emphasis on both creativity and functionality in her work. Hazlett makes napkins, grocery bags, and other daily goods with vibrant colors and unique designs. Hazlett said that she studied art at Connecticut College, and took a special interest in color, and color theory classes. Many of her products are reversible, allowing for variety in design and additional pops of color.

Hazlett said she normally works alone, but sometimes gets help from her 7-year-old daughter Finnigan, who picks out fabric and winds bobbins for sewing.

Executive director of the Marion Art Center Jodi Stevens said that 40 vendors signed up for this year’s event. Vendors are curated by the Marion Art Center’s Exhibitions Committee to ensure quality of work. Each vendor also contributed an item as a raffle prize for the event. Tickets were sold for $2 each, or $6 for ten tickets.

Arts activities for children were provided by the New Bedford Art Museum/Artworks! ArtMobile. The ArtMobile’s services were funded by the Marion Cultural Council, a local chapter of the Massachusetts Cultural Council.