I want to start by saying that I'm grateful for the opportunity to rebuild and relaunch the festival that I spent my entire life celebrating in Centennial Park. My mother became the owner of what was once The Craft Cranny in 1971 when i was just a baby girl. Along with my two sisters and my father Alan Saturn (who loved this show more than perhaps even my mother) we spent every Father's Day weekend at the fair. Over the years as it established itself as The American Artisan Festival I was always there working, either selling drinks, or booth sitting for artists, or helping my mother check people in, and eventually helping her layout and manage the show. I loved from the beginning and of course I loved working with my mother to create it. It was a family business in that sense.
But beyond the countless memories and moments I have shared in doing that work, the best part was that the community of artists also became my family, and I learned what it means to share the love of art with the community and to support artists. I learned about your process and your passion for developing it. I learned from my mother Nancy also how important it was to create access and a space to connect to artists so our Nashville community could understand and appreciate the pure joy of collecting contemporary art--whether decorative or functional.
Knowing that you can drink your coffee in a mug made by hand that feels good to the touch, or watch the light shine on a blown glass ornament on your christmas tree, or sit on your porch and bask in in the sounds of a soulful windchime on a rainy day--all of this is to say that 43 years later, I still love the mission and I'm so honored to have the opportunity to work with you as we rebuild this show with love and commitment following the path of my mother's soul.
Now, I will take that forward with a renewed sense of passion. I have relocated with my family to Nashville after almost 20 years living in New York City with the goal to bring this show to a new level of importance and quality and I can't wait to introduce the new Nashville to this incredible event. I do hope you will join me this year and thank you again for your years of support.