By Melanie Lekocevic
Capital Region Independent Media
GREENVILLE — The first-ever Arts Around Greenville Studio Tour will be held this weekend, on Saturday and Sunday, from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Artists will open their studio doors to give visitors an inside look at their process, the materials and tools they use, and how they come up with their ideas and inspirations.
The studio tour, organized by the group Arts Around Greenville and spearheaded by local artist Natalie Boburka, is free of charge. Artists will offer pieces for purchase, but there is no admission fee to visit the studios or speak with the artists.
“Arts Around Greenville is a group that we started to help people make connections in the area,” Boburka said. “We did not realize how many artists there were in this area so we started a database — there are 75 artists on the database within 15 miles of Greenville, which is pretty incredible.”
Maps of artists’ studios that will be open for the tour have been available around the town at local businesses, and visitors can also pick up a map at Prevost Hall on Route 32. They can then pick and choose which studios they want to visit and drive from one to another.
The tour will offer visitors the chance to get an inside look at the artistic process, Boburka said.
“The difference between a studio tour and going to see a gallery show is that you actually get to see the process — you get to talk to people and see how they work,” she said. “It gives you a greater appreciation for what artists go through and why they charge what they do because a lot of people don’t get that — how do you price artwork? When you see how much work it takes, how much equipment they need, and how much time and training it takes, it changes your outlook on things.”
Arts Around Greenville held a reception for the artists July 8, with the studio tour scheduled for this weekend, on both Saturday and Sunday.
In addition to learning about the artistic process, there is a financial benefit to purchasing art during a studio tour, Boburka said.
“The nice thing about buying art on a studio tour is that you don’t pay a commission,” she said. “Most people don’t know that if you put your work in a gallery, you can pay up to 60% in commission to the gallery, which means your prices are much higher because you have to pay that 60% commission. If you buy on a studio tour, you are getting pieces at almost half of what you would pay in a gallery.”
There will be a variety of artistic styles and media shown on the tour, including paintings, photography, sculpture, fabric arts, and a variety of styles and techniques.
“It’s pretty diverse,” Boburka said.
Laura Garramone, of Hannacroix, is an artist who works largely in pastels, but has also “dabbled” in acrylics. She said Boburka’s vision for a studio tour brought a lot of local artists together, which has been inspirational.
“People who know how to talk about art are different people — you get good ideas and inspiration, and bounce ideas off them,” Garramone said.
South Cairo artist Pamela Quick works in acrylics and said the studio tour gave artists a chance to meet and work together.
“This event is amazing and brought a lot of artists together,” Quick said. “I made a lot of friends with other artists in the area.”
The studio tour will be open Saturday and Sunday, July 23 and 24, from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tour maps can be picked up at many local businesses or at Prevost Hall on Route 32.