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Kew Gardens to Celebrate Local Artists With Festival

By Ewa Kern-Jedrychowska | September 20, 2013 2:17pm
 A girl works on the Prayer Flag Project which will be displayed during the Kew Gardens Community Arts Day this Sunday.
A girl works on the Prayer Flag Project which will be displayed during the Kew Gardens Community Arts Day this Sunday.
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Carol Lacks

QUEENS — The streets of Kew Gardens will be filled with painters, poets and musicians this Sunday.

To showcase the neighborhood's array of talent, local artists are organizing the first Kew Gardens Community Arts Day, featuring a number of events, including exibits, a concert, poetry reading and even sidewalk chalk drawing.

The events, concentrated around Lefferts Boulevard and Austin Street, will be a combination of “professional art shows with a small town feel,” organizers said.

Local businesses will also offer discounts throughout the day.

“We want to draw attention to art in our community and spread knowledge of it to other parts of Queens,” said Grace Anker, one of the organizers and the owner of The Potter’s Wheel, a local pottery studio.

One of the main attractions will be an outdoor art show — Art in the Kew Gardens Cinemas Park (on Austin Street, off of Lefferts Boulevard), which will present works of local painters, photographers, glassmakers, potters and fiber artists.

“There is so much going on here,” said Anker who will be demonstrating how to make pottery on potter's wheel at her studio. “But sometimes even people who live here don’t realize how rich an area it is.”

The Kids Kraft Korner will be organized for the youngest residents, who will work on their arts and crafts projects.

Michael Shimuoff, a Kew Gardens tailor, will also teach children how to sew on a button, the Kew Gardens Musicians will play musical standards during an outdoor concert and sidewalk chalk artists will try to turn gray concrete into colorful designs, organizers said.

Art lovers will also have a chance to see 100 flags decorated by residents with their "Wishes for the World," a project inspired by a Tibetan tradition.

The day will end with a 5 p.m. reading at Odradeks Coffee House by local poets and prose writers, including Deborah Emin and Aida Zilelian.

“Art is a source of discovery and it’s stimulating,” Anker said. “And we want to tie it all together and connect with people’s love of art.”

The Kew Gardens Community Arts Day will take place on Sunday, Sept. 22 (rain date: Oct. 6), from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.