Paul Siefert and Lisa Vetter travel half the country offering their functional art at juried art fairs. “People travel huge distances, all the way across the country, to do a good art fair,” Vetter said. Vetter and Siefert have shown art in Minneapolis, North Carolina, Kansas. “We’ve covered a pretty broad range,” she said.
By year’s end, though, Siefert and Vetter are back in their Spencerville home, where they will host the work of a dozen other artists at The Art Farm Holiday Pop Up Gallery.
The couple plan an opening reception from 5-10 p.m. Friday, Dec. 6. Pop Up Gallery hours are noon-6 p.m. Wednesday-Sunday, Dec. 7-29. The Art Farm is at 17616 N. County Line Road E, Spencerville, about 9 miles northeast of Leo-Cedarville.
Vetter said this marks the ninth or 10th year they have opened their studio to the holiday gift sale. “Paul and I do juried art fairs for a living, so we travel all over the country participating in these shows,” Vetter said. “So we have a lot of artist friends that we know from their work.”
It’s an invitation show. “All of these people are professionals, working artists. This is what the do for a living,” she said.
Pop Up offerings will include works by artists from Ohio, Michigan, Wisconsin, Georgia and Indiana. “So it’s a little bit of local and a lot of regional artists,” Vetter said. “And we have a variety of mediums.”
Mediums include ceramics, glass, mixed media, printmaking, jewelry, fiber, found-object sculpture, and more.
“The idea is to bring together a thoughtfully curated gallery for the holiday,” Vetter said.
Vetter organizes the gallery with gift-giving in mind. “There’s a wide variety of price points,” she said. “You can get a small handmade thing for under $20 or you might find the main event. You might find a $300 found-object sculpture that is the thing for someone special. I’ve had people buy a wide variety, from little stocking stuffers to some of our lighting, our big ceramic pieces.”
“My husband and I have done this concept for close to 20 years,” she said. “When we lived in downtown Fort Wayne we used to do a weekend event in our home. You know, we were doing a pop up before it was even a thing. There wasn’t even a name for it back then.
“This was in the mid- to late ‘90s and there weren’t that many opportunities for artists to sell their work around the holidays, so we created an event for that to happen.”
Those unique pieces just wouldn’t be available here without a venue such as the pop up gallery, she said.
Siefert and Vetter have been reaching out through art fairs full time for about 20 years, Vetter said. “The time goes by so fast.”
“Paul and I collaborate on the found object functional work and the majority of the pieces we do are functional, whether it’s lighting, or a clock or chalkboard. It’s artistic and it’s fun to look at but it’s also functional,” she said.
As an artist, she enjoys creating. As a professional artist, she has to part with some of those creations. “There are certain things that I want to live with for a little while,” she said. “You’ve gotta let it go. That’s why you’re putting it out there.”
Participating artists are John Boyette, Alynn Guerra, Cherie Haney, Sarah Martin, Kay Rice, Dorothy Schutte, Holly Sutter, Jeff Unzicker, Steve Uren, Donna Vogtmann, Karla Yauchler, Tanya Zabinski, Paul Siefert and Lisa Vetter.
The Art Farm also is open to the public during the Rural Studio Tour each spring. Otherwise, it’s Lisa and Paul’s private studio.
Read more about the artists at The Art Farm page on Facebook.