The first annual Maker's Market set up shop in Long Island City, Queens, this past weekend (June 27-28, 2009). I visited on Saturday early afternoon, before the hail storm and after the minor typhoon that accompanied Friday night's opening party. Despite the Woodstock-worthy mud (which, while rough on the exhibitors, this visitor would take over a convention center ANY day), it was an impressive, enjoyable event with great future potential.
The event was presented in Socrates Sculpture Park by Manhattan design gallery R 20th Century, the LIC-based Noguchi Museum, and American Craft Magazine (via editor Andrew Wagner before his move to ReadyMade).
About 30 galleries and individual designer/craftspeople from across the country set up booths under three huge white tents placed throughout the park. It incorporated beautifully with the "State Fair" exhibition on view there now. A complete list of exhibitors with links may be found here.
While not perfect, this show points the way toward a more up-to-date craft fair model with simultaneous attention to craftsmanship, design, and what I'd call curatorial character. Highlights for me included:
Here's to year one of the Maker's Market. I'm looking forward to seeing how this edgy high-end show grows and evolves in the years to come.