Artists shine at the La Quinta Arts Festival

Nation's top fine art fest runs all weekend

An interview with the top artists of the La Quinta Arts Festival

LA QUINTA, Calif.- - Artists are enjoying this year's La Quinta Arts Festival almost as much as the thousands of art lovers streaming through the gates at La Quinta's Civic Center Park.

This may be Debra Steidel's first-time exhibiting at the La Quinta Arts Festival, but her relationship with pottery dates back much further. The Wimberley, Texas artist has been throwing pottery since her teens and pours herself into each pot. The hard work is reflected in the distinct glimmer of her porcelain end products.

“So I fire to about 2300 degrees on the cooling side the crystals start to form." said Steidel. "And I’ll hold the firing for several hours and sometimes I’ll go up and down in that range and the growth of crystals starts to form then.”

Steidel is one of the 200-some artists featuring their work at the 36th annual La Quinta Arts Festival. The Civic Center Campus in downtown La Quinta serves as the staging area for the droves of artists who come to the valley to display their artwork. 

More than 200 unique experiences molding each artist's personal inspiration. For Steidel, sometimes that inspiration may be found in nature, sometimes just in the randomness around her. 

"Lately, it’s been mostly from nature, the creatures the textures, the shell life," said Steidel. "For example, this is modeled after an ammonite which is an ancient fossil."

For Daryl Thetford, a photographer from Chattanooga, Tennessee, his snapshots come from the world around him, but his unique spin on them comes in editing. 

I take dozens and dozens of photographs that I take." says Thetford. "I take weathered paint, of Ferris wheels, of crowds, of old signs. I combine them digitally, then I print them on a sheet of aluminum.” 

Thetford and Steidel are located a short walk from the festival's west gate.

The La Quinta Arts Festival runs 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. through Sunday. 

More event information can be found here.

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