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Thursday, June 13, 2024

Legendary Naperville Riverwalk will host Midwest’s finest art fair


Naperville Art League’s 27th Annual Riverwalk Fine Art Fair, among the finest outdoor juried art fairs in the Midwest, once again will be held along the beautiful Naperville Riverwalk.  This year’s two-day festival will be  from 10AM-5PM, Saturday-Sunday, Sept. 15-16.

The event begins at the intersection of Main Street and Jackson Ave., and continues along the Riverwalk’s winding brick walkway. A natural showcase of flowers, fountains, covered bridges and sculpture along the DuPage River, the Riverwalk is the ideal setting for artists from around the United States and other countries to showcase their work. Visitors can meet the artists and purchase artwork from 10AM-5PM on both days.

This year, more than 730 artists competed for the 140 participating available slots.

“Because our show is in the center of a sophisticated, art conscious community, with highly educated, affluent patrons, we attract the best and most talented artists from across the country,” said Debbie Venezia, chairperson for the Riverwalk Fine Art Fair and executive director for the Naperville Art League. “So for the past few years, we’ve been selecting three unique artists to represent the event.”

The 2012 event banners displayed throughout downtown Naperville feature the unique work of Saugatuck, MI digital artist John Leben. John has a BFA in Painting from the University of Illinois and an MFA in Painting from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. As an artist, John’s passion has always encompassed a wide variety of media. His featured work “Balloon Suiters” is a digital piece created in a Macintosh Computer and is part of an ongoing series of “Suiter” paintings. He is also the owner and president of Leben Productions, Inc., a media production company.

Michael McKee’s visually stunning work is featured on the 2012 collectible poster. A National Scholastics Art Scholarship winner, and Honors graduate of the Art Institute of Pittsburgh, Michael spent his professional life as a portrait artist, illustrator, graphic designer, art director and for 15 years as co-founder and creative director of Successories Inc. Having left the commercial art world behind, he now enjoys much success exhibiting in art shows, galleries and art festivals around the country, showing and selling his ‘abstract impressionist’ landscapes.

George Ceffalio is the selected artist to represent the Riverwalk Fine Art Fair on its 2012 promotional postcard. Since 2004, George has studied with David Leffel and Rose Frantzen at the Palette and Chisel Academy of Fine Art and the DuPage Art League. Awards and recognition include Best of Painting at the Lincolnshire Art Festival and Art at the Glen. Naperville Bank & Trust is the presenting sponsor of the 27th Annual Riverwalk Fine Art Fair, with Cadillac of Naperville and the City of Naperville both providing additional funding support.

For additional information about the event including directions,  visit www.napervilleartleague.com and click on the link for the Riverwalk Fine Art Fair.

History of the Riverwalk Fine Art Fair: Started in 1986 by Bruno Botorelli, developer of Riverwalk Apartments, Dr. Jonathan Croll, then president of the Naperville Art League and Dee Pasternak, League Publicity Chairman, the Riverwalk Fine Art Fair now has close to three decades of history in the Naperville community.

About Naperville Art League: Since its inception in 1961, the Naperville Art League has provided support for local emerging and established artists. The NAL supports the Naperville Fine Art Center and Gallery, located at 508 North Center Street in downtown Naperville. The Center and Gallery provides a place for artists to gather together, exhibit their original work and share their talents with the community. The Gallery is open to the public and features classes for adults and children, workshops, demonstrations and regular exhibits.

For more information,  visit www.napervilleartleague.com.

While you’re supporting the arts, thank you very much: The Riverwalk Foundation also will host a Class Art II Big Band concert directed by Ted Fredenhagen from 4:30-6PM, Sat., Sept. 15, at Fredenhagen Park along the Riverwalk just across Washington Street. The public is welcome to the free concert.

NOTE:  Debbie Venezia contributes Art Talk, a monthly column in Positively Naperville.  Search for her under “Columnists.”

File PN photos reflect events from 2009 to 2011.


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PN Editor
PN Editor
An editor is someone who prepares content for publishing. It entered English, the American Language, via French. Its modern sense for newspapers has been around since about 1800.