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Artscape 2010, Baltimore Maryland
Categories: Events, OP/EDs, Openings

Artscape 2010, America’s Largest FREE Arts Festival… kicks off today Friday July 16 and runs through Sunday July 18…

Early Predictions…

Smaller than usual crowds will be blamed on the Heat Wave

Smaller than usual crowds will be blamed on the Rain

Smaller than usual crowds will be blamed on the Economy

Smaller than usual crowds will be blamed on University of Baltimore

Have a Beer Vendor set up right smack dead center in front of the ultra Hip Cool Oasis Mount royal Tavern

IMAO, the last really cool AND hip Artscape was in 2005.  Every year since, it has gotten larger but the crowds smaller.  The only common factor I can see is the loss of Jennifer Mange and Artscape’s use of the ZAPP PROCESS starting in 2006.  Mo Money, Mo Money, Mo Money is their current mantra.  I’ve personally received 2 emails asking to attend (and pay for) this or that “pre or ongoing” all  ”with private bathrooms” special so Artscape can stay FREE to the public even though taxpayer money partially funds  ”Amercica’s Largest FREE Arts Event”…

We shall see, we’ll be adding comments and photos daily, stay in touch…

Here’s what we thought of Artscape 2009

Friday, July 16…

I made it to Artscape Friday early evening around 7ish, here are some pics.

It looks to be about the same but re-arranged a little bit.  I only got to the Midway area so didn’t really see much, I do know the “historical/original” Art cars were missing, didn’t see the hip-hop dancing,  food vendors (I think) here and there in the Midway area, a few Midway (taxpayer paid for) exhibits unmanned/closed.  The only new thing I saw was the Skatboarding exhibit, which, I hope to no one’s surprise, drew the biggest crowd, I should’ve done a run…

more later.  BTW – I love the balloons…

Saturday July 17…

Hot once again Saturday but got cool spot for my bike with the “Tour Dem Parks” crew and my “Artscape 2010 Being Green Rocks” button.  Ended up at the famed Mount Royal Tavern and along the way ran into a few friends; Tony Walker, Paul Taylor, Cheryl Moulton, Renee Tantillo, Amy Weishaar and the Rodney aka Dangerously Delicious Pies….  Some nice art I liked, Photos by  Robert McClintock, Wire Sculptures by Devin Mack and Paintings by Jeff Kerr. As a special shout out, Erica Rubel Had Matter Art should get a reward or something. The last year I participated at Artscape was in 2005, that’s when I first met Erica. Since then, I have run into her at literally dozens of art events including HonFest, Hampden Fest and every year at Artscape.  This artist deserves a big hand!!! I also enjoyed Renee Tantillo’s new works found in the “Art Car Lounge” as well as Jeremy Crawford’s “It’s not about you” exhibit.  more later…

Some interesting facts we found on the Artscape website; “The largest free arts festival in the country with over 350,000 attendees.” and “In 2009, Artscape’s total economic impact on Baltimore was $25.97 million.”  In the not so long ago, Artscape’s big claim to fame was the “over 1,000,000 attendees”, we did math and came up with fact that if the million were true, then every single person that lived in the city (man, woman and child) would need to bring 2 friends along in order to get to that magic million mark, NOT.  We’ll look into the almost $26 million revenue claim and just with simple math, that means the average person (man, woman and child) that attended Artscape would need to spend $75 each.  It’s probably way more complicated than that, so we’ll have to get to this later but I hope you gain some perspective…

  • Here’s an interesting article we found, “Festival-goers spent $9 million with Artscape vendors of which $3.5 million was spent on art from the exhibitors and $4.3 million on food and beverages.” (Baltimore.biz) With just some really really basic arithmetic, if $3.5 million were spent on Art, lets suppose, there were 350 exhibitors, do some math and you come up with a whopping $10,000 in sales from each and everyone of the 350 Art Exhibitors. A couple of problems with that number, there are not 350 Art Exhibitors to the best of my knowledge at Artscape so that average just goes up and since attending every Artscape starting in 1999, I have not met, nor know anyone to have claimed or made over $10,000 in sales at Artscape.  ”$3.5 million spent on art from exhibitors”, NOT,  this is an insult…

Sunday July 18…

Too hot to talk about anything at the moment. Enjoy the photos, mostly food vendors etc etc etc… You know what, there is no shade in Baltimore during the 3rd weekend in July, seems like it.

After chatting with Food Vendors and Artists over the weekend, it sounds like the company line was “a little light” in regards to traffic and sales. Truly, I must’ve spoken to at least 2 dozen individuals and they each used the same term “Light” when describing the sales traffic, and this even includes a lemonade vendor. It may in fact been a light crowd.  For all 3 days I attended I could walk my bike easily through all of Artscape, last year I would not have even considered it. The current heatwave in Baltimore played a part in keeping the numbers down, IMAO but it wasn’t the only reason

more in a bit…

Conclusion…

“Robbing Peter to Pay Paul” – coming Friday July 23 at the latest… maybe Monday, too hot

Did we mention these outstanding and entertaining people:

  • Stink Hole Midway

Some Comments Heard about Artscape 2010:

  • “It’s really just a Fair…”
  • “I can take it or leave it next year.”
  • “Crowds were definitely much smaller.”
  • “The music wasn’t as good as usual.”
  • “This is Artscape, why would you be able to shop ‘vendors’ you can find at the Mall?”
  • “The area by the train station looked empty compared to last year, and what’s up with the Mac & Cheese tent.”
  • “We like to call it a Stipend.”
  • “The atmosphere kinda felt dead… blah.”

http://picasaweb.google.com/theunartist to see all the photos from Artscape 2010 and 2009

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1 Comment to “Artscape 2010, Baltimore Maryland”

  1. buy bicycle says:

    I have been checking out your posts and really love it. thanx for the fun reads! do you ever do any bike cycling ?

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