Fair Ferment

Tom Schlafly is frothing over his beer's banishment from St. Louis' biggest art festival

Cynthia Prost disagrees. "If you want to be a nationally juried show, you can't have quotas. If you start to pollute the jury process a little bit, if it isn't pure, if you leave a certain amount for local artists who maybe their work isn't on a level with some of these others, then artists, who are notoriously vocal, will complain and won't apply to your show because they think it's a rigged jury system."

Artist Eric Woods plans to display his paintings at Schlafly's Maplewood fair after three years at the Saint Louis Art Fair. "Every time we go it just seems to get worse and worse, because the variety of artist they have there is just -- it's the same people every year, and the same kinds of work they did last year," he says.

Schlafly's Kopman says an alternative fair is good for the city. "There're a lot of festivals that have started all over the world that are successful and are made even more successful when the fringe events pop up all around them. So we decided to do it the same weekend."

Tom Schlafly stands in of his Maplewood bottling 
facility with Ann Haubrich, member of the Art Outside 
organizing committee.
Jennifer Silverberg
Tom Schlafly stands in of his Maplewood bottling facility with Ann Haubrich, member of the Art Outside organizing committee.

Prost also has no objection to the dueling fairs; in fact, she's in favor of it.

"I think it's great," she says, "in that it allows for this local focus which, unfortunately, we're just not able to do. I don't think the city should have just one major art fair. I'm kind of hoping that I'll get a chance to run over there on Saturday and see what's going on."

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