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Juno ArtFest by the Sea—Well, I finally met Howard and Debbie

Juno was this past weekend and it is a Howard Alan Show.

The Show location is an artist’s dream. Booths are on a narrow two lane strip of Highway A1A right along the Atlantic Ocean.

Booths on the east side of the road are setup on grass with luscious trees and vegetation that are a barrier to the beach and the ocean which is about 30 yards away from booths.

 Booths on the west side are setup on the road with a sloping terrain behind which is surrounded by trees and vegetation.

The Show is held in a Loggerhead turtle preserve park.

So imagine about 225 booths lining the road with immense crowds walking down the middle.

This Show is a major money-maker for many artists.

I saw a constant flow of large panoramic pieces go by me each day.  Some were photos and many were paintings. Many were in the four to six foot range.

Juno is right by Jupiter so you get a large migration from the northeast here. I call it a New York State of mind.

They are well dressed and many bring their dogs, in baby carriages.  Some actually stop and go into the booths and look at the art.

A lot of them give you about a three second stare at the work— and then they spin away. It is hard to get them to actually look at the work in the bins.

This is mostly a decorator art market.  They want splashy Florida colors but don’t want anything really serious.  If it matches the couch they are in there.

Florida Dreck sells best here.  They like the surf washing up on the beach.  They love their lighthouse scenes and basic images of flowers do ok.  

Original, out of the heart art dies here.  It simply not what they want.  Keep it light and let me have leftover money for a $12 martini with that good cigar.

I finally met Howard and Debbie Alan.

We both we’re impressed by meeting each other.  Now we can scratch that one off the bucket list.  On to Thahiti.

They are a charismatic couple.  And they support their artists and that is why he has such a loyal following of artists that do his shows.

Because of the location on a narrow strip of road, things must be micro-managed in a professional way.

I give them an A-plus in doing that.

We got to set up in daylight on Friday.  It was a mellow affair. This is only my fourth HAE Show I have ever done. I do not like setting up at 5am in the morn—it is against my religion.

Sunday teardown is precarious, but efficient.

They give you two options.  You can dolly out shortly after the show closing at five. For many, it is a long dolly to the van.  The lots are not right behind the booths except at some places of the south end.  The north dolly is long.  You better be in great shape.

The second option is this.

Tear down the booth.  Get everything on the ground.  Then take a picture of it on your phone.  Show it to a show official, then go get your van and get in line.  Then you will usually be at your spot within the hour or less.  I waited 30 minutes. I got to my spit at 6:45 and was out of there by 7:15 not bad for a 74 year old geezer.

That said, it was not a good show for me. Cannot blame Howard, he did his job.

The crowd that comes does not respond in kind like what I get on the Florida west coast or Texas or the Midwest.

It is a New York State of mind and they do not like me enough.

I have body of humor which usually always sells and brings me lots of buckos—not here.

They are humorless.  They smile and laugh at it, then they move on.

My Florida landscape and seascape work did not win them over.

I barely sold $1500, that does not cut the mustard.

But, that is just me.  The rest of you, especially newbies need to give the show a try.

I mean early March, by the ocean in Florida, with big crowds, it is an artist’s dream.

Aloha, Nels.

I have three killer shows coming up.  I am making about 500 pieces of art to sell at these three—one of them is Main Street Fort Worth.

Stay tuned for future blogs.

Nobody out there, and that includes ArtFair Reviews, gives you the real skinny like I do.

PS.  Howard was not sure it was really me, the real Nels.  He was thinking of me giving him a blood test.  I told him to go see my adopted son, Steve Vaughn, and he would verify me.

Jeez! I hope that works.

Views: 708

Comment by Connie Mettler on March 11, 2019 at 4:26pm

Nice review! I'm thinking many, many years ago when the Miami Beach Festival of the Arts, the weekend before Coconut Grove, was worth your time, run by top notch volunteers, and they lost their prime location on Collins Ave., it was help in this park. Really lovely. (please don't critique me on that run-on sentence.)

So, not great for you, but great for others. A familiar scenario. You have that beautiful photo with the heron on Itchetucknee, not even that? Over the years we never found Howard or Debbie anything but affable. Fine folks, know what they are doing and their events support many of our friends. I'd guess there was more than one person exhibiting who could vouch for you.

How is price of the lodging around there? As expensive as around Jupiter? basically the same area, right?

Comment by Nels johnson on March 11, 2019 at 5:07pm

Very expensive.

Steve Vaughn and I stay at La Quinta in Jupiter during Artigras and it was about $225 per nite.

This weekend they wanted $275 we said no.

I stayed with an old friend, Off the circuit now, who lived in Jenson Beach, one hour north. It cost me a visit to a neighborhood sushi bar least one nite for dinner.

That is why this show is a no go for me.  If you cannot do at least $3K there it is a wash.

This area is mucho expensive during the winter.

Maybe I should buy Howard some reading glasses, everybody knows me, but then, maybe not.

Screw it! Howard can buy his own glasses, he has more moola then me.

It was fun to write this blog.

Ellen and I were lunching at the Crowsnest on NSB.  It took me to golden margaritas, one Mich Ultra draft and an order of spicy smoked chicken wings to complete this blog.

There I was working hard on my Fuckoff Day.

Oh well, still have 450 more pieces of art to do before end of March.

Bayou City next.

Comment by Nels johnson on March 11, 2019 at 5:09pm

Meant two golden margaritas.

We have no way to edit our comments after publishing.

Maybe you could improve that.

Comment by Nels johnson on March 11, 2019 at 5:11pm

Are you kidding me about the heron.

It is a killer shot but I cannot even give it away, way too arty for the airheads who inhabit this region.

Comment by Connie Mettler on March 12, 2019 at 11:34am

Well, how about this one?

Comment by Nels johnson on March 12, 2019 at 11:57am

Great shot but nobody down here is the least interested

Comment by Harry Mackie on March 12, 2019 at 1:12pm

We have not done any HA shows for many years.  One reason being......we were scheduled to do a show in Las Olas & Harry had to have emergency surgery & was in the hospital for 10 days - we had to cancel.  You can bet they filled our space but we did not get a refund.  Perhaps most people have not heard this story about artist painter who had been doing shows with them since their beginning and had done every one of their shows thru' the years was dying of a fast moving cancer.  Another artist went to their offices to elicit a donation to help pay for the arts' medical bills - he didn't have insurance - Howard said "humph - he owes me money!"  Needless to say........Yes, they put on a great show - we have done many of them - but none since we needed to cancel.

Comment by Paul Flack on March 12, 2019 at 4:38pm

Blood test???? Breathalyzer test would have told the whole story.

Comment by Nels johnson on March 12, 2019 at 5:45pm

Paul, you are bloody Mary right


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