Any artist, collector, garage sale hunter or believer that one man's trash is another man's treasure should head to "Contain It! Eat This! and Trashy Treasures!" at the Dunedin Fine Art Center this weekend.
Three, count them, three events in one location. It all kicks off with a party tonight.
Originally separate events, Contain It! and Trashy Treasures! became one event four years ago. New this year, Eat This! features six food trucks offering gourmet food. Now the event has morphed into what DFAC calls a tasty triple header.
"We'll have the food trucks, music, dancing and bars on Friday night," said Ken Hannon, the art center's associate executive director. "It's a fun event, festive, more of a party atmosphere. And on Friday night, the higher-quality artwork will be in the silent auction."
Hannon stresses there will also be some artwork available Saturday that's not shown tonight. And though the bars close up after Friday night, Eat It! starts up again at 9 a.m. Saturday when the food trucks open.
Last year, about 300 people attended the Friday night party. Five-hundred showed up for Saturday's Trashy Treasures, an art-themed garage-type sale. And lines formed early. Almost $12,000 was raised from the weekend for art education.
Contain It! will feature six portable storage containers reworked inside by artists who transform the PODS into worlds of art that people can enter. The sixth container will feature a "Steal My heART" theme.
Last year at Contain It!, artist Sarah Gail Hutcherson had 54 pieces of her art taken when people misunderstood a sign posted about Hutcherson's art. People thought they could take the wooden pieces home. And they did. So far, according to Hannon, 32 pieces of the vintage patterns on raw wood have been returned. DFAC hopes to get them all back.
"We're going to kind of riff on that this year with one container exhibit called Steal My heART," Hannon said. "We're inviting people to take a treasure from that container and we're giving people a lighthearted way to return art they may have inadvertently taken from Sarah last year. I believe pieces are still missing only because people haven't heard yet what happened."
Volunteers have been busy gathering and pricing treasures for the Trashy Treasures art sale.
Walk through the halls of the center and colors pop from canvases lined up against the walls. Works of art, treasures in all sizes, mediums and hues wait for new owners to admire and buy them.
"It's a great year for trash," said Ronnie Stewart of Dunedin, who has volunteered at the event for two years, but has been giving to DFAC for 25. She and other volunteers spend hours preparing everything from ornate frames, paintings, art supplies, sculptures and more for the event.
"At Trashy Treasures you'll have a chance to buy some inexpensive art, photographs, art pieces, clay, picture frames, said Meg Huntley, the art center's events director. "Art supplies will be sold on Saturday morning. New this year is the food truck rally. It's going to be a fun party. Everyone I know is bringing eight friends."
"We lovingly refer to the art as trashy treasures," Hannon said. "Just because it's here doesn't mean it's trashy . . . Why some people decide they don't want to live with a work of art anymore, who knows what the reason is. But we get fabulous things that people have the opportunity to look at and buy. And I guarantee never at a better price."