Why urban craft shows are cool

(the owl is from renegadecraft.com

Yesterday I covered why the huge S.O.F.A. show in Chicago is no longer an inspirational show. SOFA is a nice show, but when you compare it to the urban craft shows of Chicago, SOFA looks like a dry stale piece of toast. No. It’s not even toast. Toast would at least be intersting. SOFA is a block of glass on the sidewalk when you compare it to dynamic coolness of Chicago’s urban craft shows. (Yes, SOFA literally had a block of glass on top of concrete at the show–which might have been one of the coolest things there).

Why urban craft shows are cool:

(and i’m not talking about grandma craft shows, these are the urban shows with artists in their 20s and 30s)

1) Wide range of medium

Silk-screen prints, paintings, jewelry, crocheted items, felt stuffed animals/bags/purses, canvas bags, tshirts, knitted cozies, and much much more.

2) Great range of subject matter

You won’t find the SOFA bland abstract art here. There’s so many cool subject matters that the artists use in their work, it blows your mind.

3) Affordable

You can actually buy stuff at these shows. Things typically cost around $5 to $40.

4) It’s for anyone

Now while the people you usually see these shows are the cool-beatnik-artist-type-people in their 20s and 30s, the show is fun enough that anybody of any age range would enjoy it. I’ve even seen dogs enjoy the show!

5) Friendly people

The sellers are very friendly and open to talking to you.

6) Cameras allowed

Now, even though you can bring your camera in, I think I would still feel awkward taking pictures of other people’s stuff. So actually this is a mute point.

7) No ticket price

Just walk right in.

8) Artists right there

The people selling the artwork are almost always the people who make the art. They have a personal interest in talking to you share ideas. SOFA sometimes has the artists there, but you don’t always know if it’s the artist or not.

Tomorrow I will list the upcoming urban craft shows in Chicago.

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17 years ago

Actually, i don’t consider alot of the stuff in these shows to be “urban craft”. I view it more as “fun underground art”. Some of the pieces in these shows are quite thought-provoking. “Art” does just that. “Craft” does not.

17 years ago

did you write down the names of people’s websites from the show? I’m always interested in seeing the latest and greatest in fun, underground art.

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