DOVER — Rather than the typical flower arrangements, terrariums with various succulents and the occasional frog were set on each table for the Festival at Sandpoint's big poster reveal event Thursday.
"When she saw the artwork, (florist Diane Miller) couldn't help but get a little creative with it," said Festival Executive Director Dyno Wahl, teasing the crowd as they anxiously awaited the reveal.
The artwork is weatherproof and can be placed in a garden, Wahl added, still working up the crowd.
And finally, the veil was lifted.
This year’s poster artist, Leata Judd, created four frog sculptures, each one playing an instrument. Their band name — The Croakers. The artwork was then photographed and used to create the posters for the Festival. The Croakers on the poster are hanging out by the river outside the Festival, having their own concert.
Judd, 88, a Sandpoint artist and art educator, is best known for her whimsical papier mache and clay creations, was chosen by a committee of her artistic peers, made up of the Festival’s past poster artists, to create a piece of original artwork for the Festival at Sandpoint’s 35th annual season.
"She just makes me smile everytime I meet with her," Wahl said as she introduced Judd.
Judd said she moved to Bayview with her husband in 1980 and has been in the area ever since, moving to Sandpoint about five years ago. Besides art, Judd has another passion The reason she gets up each day and leaves the house, she said, is to volunteer in Randy Wilhelm's high school art class at Lake Pend Oreille High School. She also volunteered at Sagle Elementary for 24 years.
The reception for the unveiling was held at the Dish at Dover Bay, with music by Get Down River. After the reveal, a long line formed as the crowd purchased their 2017 posters, hot off the press, with Judd signing each one.
Silent bidding began Thursday evening for the original artwork, donated by the artist to benefit the non-profit Festival at Sandpoint. Bidding continues through The Festival’s summer concert series, Aug. 3-13, at Memorial Field. In keeping with tradition, the winning bidder will be awarded the original artwork during intermission at the grand finale concert, “Nordic Nights,” with the Spokane Symphony Orchestra on Sunday, Aug. 13. In addition to posters, other merchandise featuring Judd’s artwork, including T-shirts and notecards, will be available at the Festival’s Merchandise Booth throughout the Festival season.
The annual summer concert series draws approximately 20,000 people annually from Sandpoint and the surrounding region including Washington, Montana, Oregon, Canada and beyond, for two weeks of eclectic concerts under the stars, on the shores of Lake Pend Oreille.
Concert tickets are available by calling 208-265-4554 or online at FestivalAtSandpoint.com.
Mary Malone can be reached by email at email@example.com and follow her on Twitter @MaryDailyBee.