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updated: 8/4/2012 4:32 PM

Batavia art fest has something for everyone

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  • Batavia's Art in Your Eye festival along the Batavia Riverwalk Saturday.

       Batavia's Art in Your Eye festival along the Batavia Riverwalk Saturday.
    Laura Stoecker | Staff Photographer

  • Batavia photographer Brad Pogatetz, right, talks about his work with Jon Schlenker, also of Batavia, at the Art in Your Eye festival along the town's Riverwalk Saturday. This is Pogatetz' second year in the show. His work focuses on abandoned buildings, mainly in the Midwest, and the items left behind in them, with some buildings being reclaimed by nature.

       Batavia photographer Brad Pogatetz, right, talks about his work with Jon Schlenker, also of Batavia, at the Art in Your Eye festival along the town's Riverwalk Saturday. This is Pogatetz' second year in the show. His work focuses on abandoned buildings, mainly in the Midwest, and the items left behind in them, with some buildings being reclaimed by nature.
    Laura Stoecker | Staff Photographer

  • Sandra Smith of Geneva looks at the "In the Garden Collection" photography series by Hoffman Estates photographer Shelly Lawler at Batavia's Art in Your Eye festival along the Batavia Riverwalk Saturday. Lawler photographs the series in her own backyard garden.

       Sandra Smith of Geneva looks at the "In the Garden Collection" photography series by Hoffman Estates photographer Shelly Lawler at Batavia's Art in Your Eye festival along the Batavia Riverwalk Saturday. Lawler photographs the series in her own backyard garden.
    Laura Stoecker | Staff Photographer

 
 

Fiber art, paintings, carvings, pottery, theater, and music drew dozens of visitors Saturday to the 8th annual Art In Your Eye festival in downtown Batavia, showcased at the Riverwalk, by the Depot Museum, and at the Batavia Government Center.

Visitors could purchase art from vendors, view students' work, and learn about the Albright Theater, or become a ceramics artist at the Water Street Studios booth.

Joe Kraft of Batavia was one of the artists guiding people in the art of throwing pottery Saturday morning. One of his first students was pastels painting artist Mark Allen of Batavia.

Allen was doing fairly well, as Kraft showed him how to shape a pot and gave him tips about controlling the speed of the wheel. Until he tried to make the pot taller.

"I'm losing it, aren't I?" Allen said, as the pot suddenly started to wobble, then developed a hole in its side. "Should I start over?"

Not far away, at the Art In Your Ear stage, the Hix Bros. Soon-to-be-Famous Be Famous Ukelele Club led off the entertainment. Thirteen people -- two of them playing lap steel guitars, not ukuleles -- strummed away a variety of songs, from Hawaiian to Leonard Cohen's "Hallelujah."

"Ukuleles are really meant to be played by yourself, while you are in the bathtub or driving," joked Peter Hix, co-owner of the store where the club meets weekly.

One of the enthusiastic, and youngest players was Nolan Manke, 10, of Naperville. He added ukulele to his repertoire two years ago. He also plays bass guitar and drums.

"It (the ukulele) just seemed so exotic and fun. I didn't know anyone who played ukulele," he said.

The event continues from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday at Island Avenue and Houston Street. For more information, visit artinyoureye.com.

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