The Ann Arbor District Library held its Tiny Expo Indie Art and Craft Fair this past Saturday, December 10th, and it was everything you would expect and more! Held in the lobby of the library’s downtown location, the art fair was packed with local artists with a variety of art mediums from fiber arts to woodworking. This event is typically held annually during December; however, this year’s fair was especially anticipated due to the 2021 expo being canceled.
I was shocked at the amount of people I saw in that first floor lobby of the library. I enjoy my regular trips to the library for book browsing and studying, but have never in my life seen more people in a library than I did at the art fair. What a beautiful culmination of community! Everyone was engaged in conversation either with their friends, discussing how wonderful the art was and which they planned on taking home, or with vendors, asking about their creations and their journey as artists. I picked up almost every artist’s card and brought home a series of whimsical prints from Arsenal Handicraft LLC. You can see a list of vendors here, but some others that stuck out to me were Science Bee, who had jewelry made out of old medical slides, WoolyMammothDesign with their 3D fiber arts, and the adorable designs of White Bird Pins, an artist that I have had the pleasure of working with in the past during the What the F Art Fair that you can read more about on our blog here! Candance’s designs amaze me constantly.
While the first floor lobby was buzzing with excitement, the basement was also a world of fun. Craft tables were full of attendees as well as free, on-site, screen printed tote bags! As someone who is studying the environment, I was so happy to see the screen printing station — a sustainable alternative to regular printing and way more fun if you ask me!
This event was such a beautiful and important showcase for local artists and I was touched by the turnout. I found myself staying long after the group I came in with had left to look at the Black Artist Showcase that was up in the library as well — a beautifully curated exhibit in the midst of the expo. The space was set up perfectly for the flow and exchange of people, conversations, and excitement. I could not imagine a more intentionally and beautifully designed event! I absolutely cannot wait for next year’s Tiny Expo, or any other library events for that matter.