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Amy's final outdoor show of the Chicago season was this past weekend. It was the Last Call Art Show in Highwood, Illinois.

Highwood has always been the poor stepchild in a string of suburbs in the north shore suburbs of Chicago. It is surrounded by upper class suburbs and for years was known for its wonderful restaurants. It was also the only town that in the area that was 'wet', apparently ignoring the Women's Christian Temperance Union which I believe originated in Evanston, a few suburbs south.
As a result, people are used to traveling to Highwood from the other suburbs.

This show advertises itself as a chance for artists to sell end of season, extras, miscellaneous and even broken art at discount prices. Some booths had discounts but most were 10% or 20%. Others didn't indicate any discounts at all and one had discounts of 50% on most of their merchandise. I don't know if the 130 advertised artists were actually there as I was told by an artist at another festival this weekend that Amy had been sending out emails to artists all over the Chicago area saying if you wanted in at Highwood, you could get in. About 1/3 of the artists there were regular Amdur show participants. The overall quality was not as high as a regular Amdur show but there were a lot of fine artists there.

This isn't a starving artist's show with a price ceiling and it wasn't a 2nds show. I also did not see the usual newspaper advertising that Amy usually has before a show.

There were not a lot of people there but if they all bought as much as I did, the artists should have been happy.

Views: 129

Comment by Sheila Wissner on September 27, 2010 at 8:51am
I did a show in Highwood a couple years ago put on by a different promoter and the attendance was very low.
Comment by Connie Mettler on September 27, 2010 at 10:48am
As I understand this, Amy intends this to be a "studio clearance" event, with all the usual rules for her events suspended. In addition, at least last year, she was not requiring the artist to be present. I was severely tempted to load up our van and take my husband's photography to sell as we are no longer doing art fairs and there is some "overstock", but I seem to be busy with other things :)
Comment by geri a. wegner on September 27, 2010 at 1:45pm
Sheila, The first year of the show you are talking about was held the same weekend as Port Clinton. That was a big mistake. The second year the attendance didn't seem that great but the artists were ok. Those may have been dw events, I am not sure.

Connie--one word--etsy. Yes, I think you do have enough on your plate at the moment!!
Comment by Debbie Netter, D & W Events, Inc on September 28, 2010 at 10:52am
Hi Geri,
You are correct! The first and second years were D & W Events shows. Artist feedback confirmed the quality was good, both years, but attendance wasn't as expected in year two.
Year one, the same dates as Port Clinton, worked better! There was supposed to be a shuttle going between both shows but it didn't materialize....
You may be interested in our other shows, visit our website,, towards the middle of the month for updated show information!
Comment by Rosie Wilhelm on September 27, 2017 at 9:14am

I did this show this year, which was held 9.23-24.2017.  It was VERY HOT.  Chicago broke heat records.  94 on Saturday, 92 on Sunday.  The thing that made the heat bearable was a slight breeze.  People were constant on Saturday, however I only sold one small painting.  This show was listed as anything under $100.  I think Amdur Productions had problems getting Artists since they were accepting applications a week before the show.  I had entered before the deadline, was accepted, (which I was thrilled, considering I am just getting into showing at Art Fairs,) so I was surprised they were still looking for Artists.  On Sunday, their were more people and I finally made a small profit.  

I heard from others that they didn't sell anything, or just one thing.  I don't have any experience on what sells, however although I wanted to sell more, it helped me to feel out what the "buyers" are looking for.  

Depending on what I do next year, I might do this show again.  I made some great new friends and everything is an experience.  

Comment by Connie Mettler on September 28, 2017 at 12:06pm

Great philosophy, although we can't have too many of these barely breaking even experiences and stay in business. Slow shows can be fertile learning grounds. When I found myself in that situation I usually looked around and tried to find someone to trade a piece of art with, bringing home lasting memories, not necessarily a bill paid. What are you going to do?

Comment by Rosie Wilhelm on October 2, 2017 at 8:30am

I also do pet portraits so I have some 'future' business from that.  I take what I learned from this show and apply it for the next year's shows that I decide to exhibit in.  :)


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