Music played in the background while artists and bidders filled Old North State Winery in downtown Mount Airy Friday night in hopes of taking home their own unique piece of art, a larger-than-life fiberglass fiddle sculpture.
These particular pieces of art are unique in that they are not hanging on the wall or displayed in a gallery. These sculptures are displayed on the sidewalks of downtown Mount Airy.
“It has been so rewarding to see citizens and visitors enjoying the sculptures downtown,” said Lizzie Morrison, Main Street coordinator for Mount Airy Downtown Inc. Morrison has organized the event for the past two years.
As music was played by local artist Jim Vipperman while guests arrived, they were able to view the larger than life fiddle sculptures up for auction and admire those that had been created but were not being auctioned off as they had been chosen for permanent display.
This year four large fiddle sculptures were available for auction, with minimum bids of $500 each. Each fiddle was hand-painted by local artists, according to Morrison.
Large fiddle sculpture artists include Jordan Brannock, Kayla Ellis, Morrison, Chad McCreary, Keenia Beck, Andrea Morrison, Will Sheppard, Kelly Marion, Heather Harbour Bedsaul, and Katie Jones.
In addition to the large fiddles, MAD incorporated a new twist to this year’s fiddle crawl, this was six “little fiddles,” as organizers refer to them. These are actual wooden fiddles, some that can be strung and played. These little fiddles were rotated between businesses downtown and displayed, for two weeks at a time. Six local artists have used various media to create works of art from actual fiddles. The minimum bid for these fiddles were $100 each.
One artist of the little fiddles, Jessica Bolick, a first-time artist stated the most exciting part of the auction was the anticipation of “seeing how interested bidders are in your art.”
“I love this program because it has given local artists the platform to do what they love, and share their talent with the community. This year we had 16 visual artists involved, and several musicians as well,” said Morrison. “We’re looking forward to expanding the sculpture collection to banjos next year.”
The auction proceeds benefits Mount Airy Downtown Inc., which supports the economic development initiatives in the downtown region. “The fiddle crawl helps us celebrate our deep heritage in music and pride in our local artists,” said Ted Ashby, president of Mount Airy Downtown Inc.
Artist applications and sponsorship information is available in the MAD, Inc. office located at 119 Moore Avenue, and will be available at www.mountairydowntown.org soon. Call 336-401-0885 for more information.
Reach Eva Queen at (336) 415-4739 or on Twitter @MtAiryNewsEva