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Ground breaking Art event, Tanglefoot Open Studio, turns 20

Underwriting support from:


/Tanglefoot Studios

Was there Art in Grand Rapids before ArtPrize? Yes, lots of it in all sorts of locales. This year marks the 20th anniversary of one of the most notorious art events in Grand Rapids, the Tanglefoot Artist Open Studio. The Tanglefoot Building garnered its name from the fly paper that was once produced at the site and has since been infested with artists. The maze of a building reveals dozens of local artists diligently working away at their craft. Once a year the artists open their studios to the public, offering a great opportunity to buy local art and support the local art community.

Artists began moving into the Tanglefoot building in the late 1980s and in the Fall of 1991 the Tanglefoot Open Studio event began. It was the first open studio event of its kind in Grand Rapids and became the model for similar events around the city over the coming years. Artists Michael Pfleghaar, Nikki Wall, and Elaine Dalcher were the original hosts of the event and due to its success, they decided to make it an annual event. Over the years the event has continued to grow and attract the attention of the local art crowd, inspiring artists to create their own events instead of relying on the art market to "discover" them.  

This year the three founding artists are joined by ten other local artists, all members of the Tanglefoot studios. The event will be held in the historic Tanglefoot Building at 314 Straight SW, between Wealthy & Butterworth on Friday, November 19 from 5 to 10 PM and on Sunday, November 21 from Noon until 5 PM. This event provides an opportunity for people to support local artists and the local economy while at the same time having some fun and getting things checked off holiday shopping lists.  

More information on the studio's Facebook event.

Disclosure: The author is a local artist

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Ah ha! I am glad for the return of this mainstay in our local arts community.