Four the five fine art festivals put on by the Naples Art Association in 2011 have just been named by Sunshine Artist Magazine to their 100 Best Fine Art and Design Shows.
This annual list represents the absolute best shows in the United States for 2011. Thousands of art and craft shows in various forms exist around the country, but this list represents the country’s most elite.
Coming in at #10 nationally was the Naples National Art Festival. This art festival has earned a place on the top 10 list dating back to 2007. Naples National is now celebrating its 33rd year and serves as the association’s largest fundraiser. Each year, approximately 275 fine artists from around the country descend on Naples to showcase their talent in front of over 20,000 people in Cambier Park and along 8th Street South. The 33rd Annual Naples National Art Festival is scheduled for February 25-26, 2012.
The association’s two festivals held along 5th Avenue South in Naples, The Downtown Naples Festival of the Arts, and the Downtown Naples New Year’s Art Fair, were ranked #24 and #62 respectively. These events are scheduled for January 7-8, 2012 and March 24-25, 2012 and will showcase approximately 260 national artists.
The Mercato Fine Arts Festival, which is the association’s newest art fair, earned a repeat ranking of #75. “This ranking is notable due to this show’s infancy. It is very uncommon for a show in its first or second year to earn a place on The Top 100 List,” said Marianne Megela, Festivals Director for the Naples Art Association. The 3rd Annual Mercato Fine Arts Festival is scheduled for March 3-4, 2012 at the Mercato Shopping District in North Naples.
Although the association’s smallest and first festival of the season did not make the Sunshine Artist Magazine top 100 list, the Naples Fall Fine Art and Craft Festival is expected to draw over 100 artists from around the country. Now in its 8th year, this festival is an excellent kick-off to the holiday shopping season. Nestled along 10th Street South in Naples near The Depot, this event is scheduled for the Saturday and Sunday after Thanksgiving, November 26-27, 2011.
In all, there were seven festivals in Southwest Florida that earned a place on Sunshine Artist Magazine’s Top 100 Best Fine Art & Design Shows list. Besides the four hosted by the Naples Art Association, the Bonita Springs National Art Festival in January came in at #11 and the Bonita Springs National Art Festival in March at #27. Naples Invitational Art Fest was ranked #55.
Rankings are derived from artist ballots which ask artists to rank their top 10 festivals by sales. Nearly 1,000 art shows were submitted and the shows with the highest totals made the final list.
“We are so honored to have our festivals recognized among the top 100 in the nation,” said Marianne Megela, Festivals Director for the Naples Art Association. “This is a testament to the strong support we receive from our community. We aim to put on an event that exceeds the expectations of fine art collectors and serves as a family-friendly event that provides art exposure to individuals of all ages.”
All five festivals serve as fund raisers that help support annual programming for the Naples Art Association, a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization.
The Naples Art Association is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization founded in 1954. The goal of The Naples Art Association is to educate and promote visual arts in Southwest Florida by holding exhibitions, art festivals and educational classes for adults and children. Today the organization boasts over 1,000 members and operates The von Liebig Art Center located at 585 Park Street in downtown Naples. The art center is open Monday – Friday 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. For more information, please call (239) 262-6517, visit naplesart.org, follow them on facebook at facebook.com/vonliebigcenter or twitter at twitter.com/vonliebigart.