North Texas Daily

Harvest House’s Upcycled Art Show displays local, eclectic creatives

Harvest House’s Upcycled Art Show displays local, eclectic creatives

Harvest House’s Upcycled Art Show displays local, eclectic creatives
June 01
13:00 2023

Harvest House hosted the Upcycled Art Show on Sunday, May 28, presenting work by members of the organization’s Artists Enclave of Denton County and Gainesville Area Visual Arts.

The afternoon was full of events featuring art vendors, a fashion show, face painting and a kids table — with food and drinks provided and catering by Harvest House and the Pickled Carrot food truck. Attendees could sip and browse a wide variety of items from local artists, all made from recycled materials. Unused materials and extra items like jewelry, fabric and shoes were also on display for attendees to take home for free.

“We’re hoping to have a great show and start doing this twice a year,” AEDC president Kimberly Dietrich said. “It’s an upcycled art show, and we’re trying to get more artists involved in doing more recycled art and helping the environment.”

Sunday marked the organization’s first event of 2023, with previous AEDC events celebrating Halloween and Christmas. Notable annual events by the group include: “Eggsibition,” “Enclave Eclectic,” “Day of the Dance” and “Poetry Slam.”

The AEDC, which was founded in 2015, held over 20 events prior to the COVID-19 pandemic. Dietrich said since 2020, the group has been limited to three events and a decline in membership.     

“We are taking in new members because COVID kind of hit us hard like it did all art groups,” Dietrich said.

The fashion show portion showcased eclectic items made by the artists, such as a milk jug hat, recycled handbags and pottery made from woven magazine scraps. Some notable vendors included artist Tonya Littmann, who sold jewelry made from glass, and Dos Gardenias Accessories owner and creator Evelyn Espinosa, who sources purses and bags out of recycled materials made in Mexico.

“I think I get my inspiration from the information I’m given by Artists Enclave […] and I adjust what I do accordingly,” Mendoza said. “So this was an upcycled and recycled show so what I did was I upcycled t-shirts and also I’m selling some secondhand and gently used items. I actually created some items that are more than 25 percent upcycled and I will be showing those in the fashion show.”

Artists Enclave describes itself as “Supporters of Art – individuals, businesses, collectors, patrons and other arts groups and societies,” and is open to artists of any media type. The organization’s primary goal is to help artists network with one another and be able to collaborate and get inspiration from one another.

Local artist Elizabeth Mendoza moved to Denton in 2011 and joined Artists Enclave to help further pursue various types of crafts and fine arts to sell at various Artists Enclave events.

“Lately my passion has been using my art to raise money for the TWU Julie [List] Wittmis scholarship fund, and this is what the proceeds for [the event’s] sale from my tables are going towards,” Mendoza said.

Vendor and local artist known by the name “Toast” sold his first painting at an Artists Enclave event in 2018, and was then inspired to create art professionally.

Toast said he and his brother Gilley, who joined AEDC after Toast recommended the group to him, both use art as a form of therapy and expression by getting emotions onto canvas and turning them into a positive thing.

“My favorite part is meeting people for the first time that believed in me enough to collect my work or just saw something that spoke to them and had to have it,” Toast said. “It’s still a bit shocking to me when someone buys my art. The imposter syndrome is real, but I am so very grateful when someone buys my art.”

Halfway through the outdoor event, it started to downpour, with vendors having to move their tables and items that were not covered. However, the event did not end earlier than expected and no artist’s work was damaged by the rain.

Toast said he found the rain fun, and danced around in it with other vendors and attendees. While Toast said the change in weather may have impacted the number of sales and attendees, it did not impact his time at the art show.

“I honestly don’t make art for money primarily,” Toast said. “While any art that I do sell goes towards funding our brewery taproom Art Gallery, I’m not thinking about money when I create art.”

The artist said joining AEDC, a club comprised of people that share each others’ passions, is a great way to learn and grow.

“It’s a good resource to have and there are many events that they organize with opportunities to showcase our work,” Toast said. “There are also educational events and other activities to help us grow into better artists.”

Featured Image Artists Enclave of Denton showcases local vendors in the Upcycled Art Show at Harvest House on May 28, 2023. Makayla Brown

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Celie Price

Celie Price

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