The state of the art 

SCAD's Art Materials Trade Show comes to the River Club

You know who you are. Your guilty pleasure is running your hands across a sheet of high-quality paper. You enjoy feeling the bristles of a high-dollar paint brush. Your desire is to dip into topshelf acrylics.

Only you don't always have the money to buy any of that stuff.

Fret no more. This weekend, the Savannah College of Art and Design brings you an upgrade of its annual Art Materials Trade Show. You don't have to be student or faculty to get in, and the cool stuff on display is available at "a huge discount," says John Rise, SCAD Foundations professor and the organizer of the event.

How huge a discount? "Closer to wholesale prices," says Rise.

The Art Materials Trade Show is somewhat unique "because it's a consumer show, but it's set in an academic venue," says Rise. "What it means for the SCAD community is it brings the addition of the industry into academia. It means we're able to put student interns into the booths, so that vendors get a couple of people to help set up and break down, and it lessens their investment."

What do students get out of it?

"What this means to students is they get this mini-internship where they get to deal with the business aspects as well as the creative aspects of an industry," he says.

And how about the general public?

"Outside of the SCAD community, it offers people beyond the school a chance to meet designers, chemists, and the people who have innovated these materials, and the people who market them," he says. "It gives them a chance to talk firsthand to the people who produce the products that they use as artists, or try new products that they didn't know about."

Rise says the school has made a serious effort to broaden the scope of the show. "While in the past it's been heavy in paints and brushes, this year we're bringing in a lot of materials that address fabric, fashion, and 3-dimensional products."

Here's a small sampling of some of the products you'll see:

• Delta of Sweden's new sculpture sand. "It's a lightweight product that sticks to itself but not to anything else. You can build very tall structures with it, cut it out, mold it, shape it, and do a lot of building with this particular material," says Rise.

• Montana Paint aerosol. "That doesn't sound terribly new, but its application is new," says Rise. "It's great for painting fabrics, tennis shoes, skateboards, things like that. It's got multiple capabilities."

• Golden Paint's Open Paint. "It stays wet and workable for three or four days, which completely changes the paradigm of acrylic painting."

While the emphasis at the Art Materials Trade Show is on traditional fine arts, there is a small video/photography component in the form of digital printing papers and products from Anatomy Tools, of Star Wars/Matrix/Lord of the Rings fame.

Also, there will be a series of seminars from industry professionals, including the conservation administrator of the National Gallery of Art, Michael Skalska.

Art Materials Trade Show

When & Where: River Club, 3 Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd., Oct. 1, 11 a.m.–7 p.m., Oct. 2, 10  a.m.–7 p.m., and Oct. 3, 10 a.m.–5 p.m.

Cost: Free and open to the public.

Info and Schedule: scad.edu/tradeshow


About The Author

Jim Morekis

Jim Morekis

A native Savannahian, Jim has been editor-in-chief of Connect Savannah for 15 years. The University of Georgia graduate is also a travel writer, authoring regional guides in the Moon handbook series... more


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Connect Today 10.19.2017

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