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Photo Gallery: From Mickey Mouse to Bird Skulls - Featherstone Artists Exhibit Favorite Things

Featherstone Kicks Off 2012 Season with their new show What Artists LOVE to Collect

Featherstone Center for the Arts opened the 2012 season with a twist on their traditional Valentine's Day themed show this year. What Artists LOVE to Collect is not about artists work that buyers love collecting, but rather what the artists themselves hoard away, use as inspiration and obsess over.

Last year was a great year for Featherstone, it was their 15th anniversary year and they showed 270 Island artists. Of those 270, twenty-five participated in the What Artists LOVE to Collect show.

"This was the first time we've ever done anything like this but it's been great," said Featherstone director Ann Smith. According to Smith, Featherstone always opens the season with a loved themed show around Valentine's Day.

"I felt it was an appropriate time to do a personal show," she said. "It's a great conversation starter and in the winter time we have the time to engage in conversation, to stop and think about things."

Turns out many artists are also avid collectors. Often, the collections make sense, as with cartoonist John Holladay's Mickey Mouse collection or as Smith noted with Genevieve Jacobs collection of bird skulls, feathers, eggs and other such things.

"Genevieve is a hiker and a birder. It makes sense that she would collect things she finds outsides."

Others, said Smith, "are totally out of the blue, like Valerie Sonnenthal's collection of Tokyo Toys."

Smith noted that the public really loves to connect personally with artists and this type of show is great way to make that happen.

"Our whole thing is about creating community through the arts and I feel like this show really does that. In 24 hours of the show opening, the artists were giving each other items that they had that fit into each others' collections and they have been stopped in the post office by those who've seen the show and have collections of their own."

What Island Artists LOVE to Collect, Featherstone, Oak Bluffs. Show runs through February 29, 12 noon to 4 pm daily.

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