Art in the U.S. has been on the decline. The Royal Oak Arts, Beats and Eats was an indication of carnival type festival but limited on the total art selection. It appeared that local art hobbyists were not present but only full-time studios and bigger name artists. The cost of the tents may have been prohibitive to local dealers. The decline in the interest in art and more emphasis on alcohol, burgers and bands may be an indication of cultural change.
Royal Oak Michigan recently put on the Arts, Beats and Eats festival whereby artists, musicians and food retailers from the region all gather for three days of selling and fun. Nearly six bands played and vendors with everything from sculptures to leather work maintained art tents to raise awareness of the products. Tens of thousands of people attended in order to have a good time and release steam on Labor Day Weekend.
Downtown Royal Oak was blocked off and parking was at a $20 dollar premium throughout the area. Six bands were playing at any given time and major corporations moved in to raise awareness of their products. Some might question what major corporations have to do with small time art. In reality the event was large and needed corporate sponsorship which was quite obvious from the logos and sings plastered everywhere.
As a disappointment there weren’t a lot of art vendors. Certainly not the amount you would expect. Lots of companies, lots of bands, and lots of concession stands. Nearly 600,000 visitors this year attended which superseded the preceded year by 130,000+ thousand people. Over 200 bands came to play at the stages and drew large crowds. Total revenues for most businesses were double of the previous year.
Some of the art went for as little as $10 dollars while others were nearly $500 or more. The ceramic heads by Sherrill Cannon went for around $250 each. Other impressive photography might have included partial nudity and a striking display of angels. Other works of art include paintings and even electronics.
The police and event planners were happy because no major troubles occurred at the event. Fear of gun fights, drunken disorderly conduct, and theft were all on their mind. Therefore, public officials stepped up security and planned for the worst. In the end they found the event to run smoothly and with no issues what-so-ever.
People were out in droves and spending much more money than ever before. However, as typical in American society they watched the bands, ate and drank. Not a lot engaged in buying art which is an indication that art in itself was not the main attraction. American culture has been seen as on the decline for sometime and money for art isn’t in people’s minds the same way that drinks, food and music are.