Artisphere 2021 to kick off this weekend; COVID-19 protocols will be in place

Local News

GREENVILLE, S.C. (WSPA) – Artisphere returns to the streets of Greenville this weekend. Things are going to look a little bit different this time around, but you can still expect to meet your favorite artists and add some new work to your collections.

Artisphere Executive Director Kerry Murphy is excited for what’s to come.

“I feel like we’ve been working on this for quite some time, but I think folks are really excited for the return of Artisphere presented by TD Bank,” said Murphy.

She described the festival as a celebration of the arts with top exhibitors from across the country.

“The most unique thing about art shows like this is the opportunity to actually meet and talk to the artist,” said Murphy.

Artists like Mark Ellis, who has participated in the event for 12 years, are ready to get back to it.

“There are tremendous artists here,” Ellis said. “You know this is one of the highest-rated shows in the country and this is an opportunity to see art that you normally would not have a chance to see.”

This will be his first show since the COVID-19 pandemic began. He said the festival is a way to help the art community, which has taken a hard hit over the last year.

“Guys like me and all of the other artists haven’t been able to do shows, so our income is almost zero,” Ellis explained.

Artist Chris Buonomo is a newbie to the Artisphere scene.

“Long year, so I’m excited to get back to it,” Buonomo said. “It’s been I think 14 months since I’ve had a show so it’s kind of nerve-wracking and exciting all at once. “

He works as a carver by hand with wood and stone, and said he’s looking forward to it.

“I’m excited to meet new people,” Buonomo said. “That’s always the exciting part of it.”

The festival will run Friday, Saturday, and Sunday from noon until 8:30 p.m. Reservations are for a two and a half-hour time slot. Tickets cost $5, which you get back in the form of a gift certificate to apply to a purchase of artwork.

“It is a limited capacity which I think people will really enjoy,” Murphy said. “It’ll lend itself to the opportunity to socially distance. Masks are required. We have plenty of handwashing and hand sanitizing stations on site, and I think folks are excited to be able to be out here.”

For more information on the Artisphere festival and to purchase tickets, click here.

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