November every Friday and Saturday Thanksgiving Weekend
The show is held every November on the main street in Sanibel; Periwinkle Way on the Friday and Saturday following Thanksgiving.
There has been a Thanksgiving weekend art festival held on Sanibel Island for over 24 years. The Sanibel Masters Art Festival promises to be Sanibel Islands Premier Art Event. The festival features the finest artists, and live entertainment including an anual performance by The BIG ARTS Choir on Saturday morning.
Proceeds from the event will benefit The Sanibel Community House and the arts on Sanibel and Captiva. The Community House is Sanibel Island’s first non-profit organization and is recognized as The Gathering Place on the Island. The Community House is the hub of all activity on Sanibel. A great event in a spectacular location!
Description of the event from ARTSWFLcom
One participating artist of the Friday/Saturday schedule, “very smart as the tourists/shoppers were still here and not focused on leaving til the following day.” The dates provide a bonus to festival-goers as well, since the artists are not in any hurry to wrap up early on the final day of the show either.
- 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
Place: The festival is held on the grounds of The Sanibel Community House on Periwinkle Drive, Sanibel’s main street. The Sanibel Community House has been an island fixture since 1927 and touts itself as The Gathering Place on Sanibel Island. Once on the causeway, continue for 3.5 miles before turning right at the first stop sign onto Periwinkle Way, the main thoroughfare on Sanibel Island. Continue for 2.2 miles until you see the Sanibel Community Center where the Art Festival is held.
Description: This festival has been a Sanibel Island Thanksgiving weekend tradition for 22 years. It showcases paintings in oil, acrylic and watercolor, drawings and pastels, 2D and 3D mixed media and collages, photography and digital art, woodworking, sculpture, ceramics, glass, handmade Tiffany Style Lamps, fiber art, and jewelry produced by artists and artisans from around the country. Because of the size of the show, visitors have the opportunity to interact with the artists, learn a little about their inspiration, find out how they made their artworks, and purchase fine works of art at reasonable prices directly from the artists (or commission a specific work of art if they do not find precisely what they want).
This event is a boutique festival, meaning that participation is restricted to a small number of artists in order to avoid duplication and repetition. To ensure that festival patrons are exposed to only the highest quality art, festival director Richard Sullivan attends art shows, fairs and festivals every weekend he’s not hosting a festival of his own. “I know who’s the best and I try to get them to do my shows. It’s a selection process, not an application process. We send out invitations …. We know who we want and we go out and get them.”
Sullivan also limits the size and chooses intimate settings for his festivals in order to give participating artists and festival goers a reasonable opportunity to converse about the art on display in the show. “Our artists need to spend time with the collector,” explains Sullivan. “To explain what he has has value and quality. He can only do that at a small show that’s designed to bring in sophisticated patrons …. People [who] appreciate art.”
Cost: Admission is free.
Parking: Parking Areas are available along Periwinkle Drive and at City Hall on Dunlop. Parking areas are well marked and attendants are available to assist with parking. There is full shuttle service and handicap parking for anyone who needs assistance.