Great fall weather for a driving tour to see artists and studios

New Iberia art fans visit the Art Exhibit and Reception Nov. 8 at the Acadiana Center for the Arts to launch the 2019 Open Studio Tour. Jerome Weber, center, and his wife Michelle, left, explain the snowman in his Acadiana artwork, the latest contribution to the annual Christmas card given by the couple sends to a small list of friends and family. Bobbi Pavy, right, an artist herself and former art teacher, enjoyed the variety of artistic expressions on display, an estimated 100 participants whose work will be shown at galleries around Acadiana next weekend including Weber’s home studio.

Each fall the Louisiana Crafts Guild and the Lafayette Art Association host an open studio tour across Acadiana for a look inside some of the region’s most creative spaces. The road show takes place next weekend covering approximately 38 galleries or studios, 125 artists in 10 cities including New Iberia, St. Martinville, Breaux Bridge, Henderson, Lafayette and others. The tour begins Saturday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and again Sunday from noon to 5 p.m. at all locations.

As a sneak peek of things to come, an exhibit collection of 100 artworks from the registered artists on tour were previewed during a reception Nov. 8 at the Acadiana Center for the Arts in Lafayette. Guide books were given out to the patrons attending in order to plan the tour of open artist’s galleries and studios. A sample of Teche Area galleries

“It’s a good way to see the artists in their own environment,” said Jerome Weber. “I’ll be working on a large painting for the Bayou Teche Museum Gala and they can watch me paint it. I paint one every year for the Gala. It will take me a while.”

Weber is journalizing his progress on Instagram. The first layer of pink backwash will be covered mostly with the night scene of the Louisiana Sugar Cane Festival ferris wheel next to Bayou Teche.

A Bit of History

The Open Studio Tours began in 1971 when 10 artists decided to organize a way for the public to see both finished and in progress works. Art fans in oil, textiles, basket weaving, jewelry making and more are potentially the artists and craftsmen that may become the newest incarnation of the George Rodrigue, Rollin Tyrell or Sara Parker of the first tour.

Held annually through the years, with an occasional hiatus from various artists, the last hiatus was four years ago when the Louisiana Crafts Guild and Lafayette Art Association joined forces to reactivate the tours. Under the leadership of Burnell Lemoine, and with cooperation and assistance from the organizations, artists, craftsman and a lot of volunteers, the recent year tours have been bigger and better successes. This year surpasses them all in numbers.

More Tours on the Horizon

The days remaining in 2019 are speeding by and with the Christmas holidays right around the corner — evidenced by the decorations remaining from August’s movie shoot in downtown New Iberia — it’s not too early to start planning holiday events.

St. Martinville Garden Club is preparing the town by inviting business owners and residents to decorate for a holiday contest. Organizers say, “It’s gonna be looking a lot more like Christmas” when residents and businesses accept the challenge to take part in a Christmas decorating contest Dec. 2-15. The contest will be judged on the exteriors decorations on the buildings and homes with prizes to be awarded for first, second and third place winners in each category. First place will not be awarded to the same business or residence for more than two consecutive years.

To participate in the Christmas contest, notify the garden club with the location to assure that it will be covered in the judges’ route. E-mail Melinda at melindasbr@yahoo.com, Mary at mbeth.talley1959@gmail.com or Susan at fowlersef@gmail.com.

In addition to the competition, the St. Martinville Garden Club will host its annual Tour of Homes and Merchant Market. Headquarters will be located at 201 Evangeline Blvd. Tickets are $10 and admits patrons to three beautifully decorated homes, along with the Presbytere, Thrifty Way Pharmacy and the Merchant Market.

“We will have 20 vendors at the headquarter location, just in time for Christmas Shopping,” said Brenda O. Courville, a member of the club.

For more information, contact Courville at 789-3592.

Organizations planning events during December and including New Year’s Eve are encouraged to send information about the festivities before Thanksgiving to be included in Around Acadiana or for possible features throughout the month. Send to TecheLife.editor@daily-iberian.com or call 321-6734 with dates.

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