Local artists put creativity on display

Event takes a different tact for Small Business Saturday

  • By Christopher Stephens The Herald Bulletin
  • Nov 26, 2016

ANDERSON — Park Place Arts owner Eliot Reed was looking to do something a different for Small Business Saturday.

Instead of offering deep discounts on merchandise or giving out door-buster deals, he invited area artists to transform his space into a mixed-media gallery to showcase what Anderson residents are able to create.

“This really showcases the talent in this town,” he said, surrounded by paintings, pottery, woodworking and reclaimed pieces of artwork.

Reed said he was excited about the turnout, not just because it brought people into the doors of his shop, but also because it helped to give exposure to artists who often remain unknown.

The exhibit, which includes art of all types from a dozen Anderson artists offered for sale, will run through December, but Reed said he wanted to use Small Business Saturday as a way to introduce residents to the artists.

“I’m surprised by what people do and what they are making. I think people will be impressed,” he said.

Brent Hagan displayed several of his photographs Saturday, thought he usually doesn’t sell his artwork.

“I just like sharing it and if I sell something, that’s good; if I don’t that’s all right, too,” he said. “It’s kind of neat to come to things like this.”

Dale Van Derra, who owns Kettle Top Brewery downtown, said he came to the event as a way to support another local business.

“There has started to be a small group coming together and hoping to see people come to Anderson and stay in Anderson,” he said. “We all help each other out.”

Van Derra said he wasn’t aware there were so many artists and makers in Anderson.

“There’s a lot of unspoken talent and potential in Anderson,” he said.

Small Business Saturday

• 95 million people went out to shop small on Small Business Saturday in 2015.

• Spending on the day reached $16.2 billion last year, a 14 percent increase over 2014.

* A National Federation of Independent Businesses survey found 55 percent of U.S. consumers are aware of the day, which comes the day after Black Friday, and a 83 percent said it inspires them to shop small throughout the year.