Las Olas Art Fair welcomes thousands on sun-splashed Saturday | Photos

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It was a no sweat Saturday for Aaron Reed at the 34th annual Las Olas Art Fair.

The figurative abstract artist from Conyers, Ga., was among thousands enjoying a sunny day with temperatures in the 80s and low humidity. And he wasn’t worried about selling his work.

Reed, one of 165 artists from 20 states at the Art Fair, said he did OK for the last year-plus, including during the worst of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“People just buy differently,” said Reed, who said his art encompasses music, love and motion. “But they’re still remodeling their houses, still buying houses, still buying art.”

Howard Alan, co-founder of the Las Olas Art Fair along with his wife, Debbie, gave a similar account.

“People are buying art like crazy,” he said.

Reed estimates he’s displayed his wares at eight or 10 Las Olas Art Fairs, and this year’s event was providing a steady stream of potential customers.

But perhaps no one was more excited to see Las Olas Boulevard packed with artists and art lovers than Howard Alan.

“The artists are happy to be here, and our patrons are thrilled to be here,” Howard said.

The Las Olas Art Fair features everything from $25 earrings to a $75,000 bronze sculpture.

It’s expected to host around 20,000 visitors during its two-day run. Sunday’s showing, which runs from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., is expected to draw the bigger crowd.

Dell Matthews plans on attending both days even though he lives in West Palm Beach. He’s attended for the past eight years and enjoys the variety of art styles and artists.

“It’s all different cultures you have here, and it all comes together,” he said.

There’s another reason he attended.

“I’m glad to be outside,” he said.

That seemed to be a popular sentiment. Although the artist’s booths were socially-distanced, there weren’t many reminders of the pandemic Saturday. Perhaps 20% of patrons wore masks. And people seemed to enjoy being outdoors on a beautiful day and casually strolling down Las Olas, which was blocked to car traffic.

Ezgi Sertcein, who creates original art using crystal stones on canvas, was displaying her art at the Las Olas Art Fair for the third year.

She said she does six shows per year in Florida. She’s hoping to sell 10 pieces this weekend, and she’s optimistic she’ll reach her goal.

“This show is not as empty as the last show,” said the Turkey native who now resides in Boca Raton. “The people are looking all the time.”

Howard Alan said this year’s Art Fair features lots of new artists. He said they try to rotate the artists at the show and many of this year’s artists are displaying their work for the first time ever.

“This is a big thing for them,” he said. “They’re all happy to be here.”

It seemed everyone shared that sentiment Saturday.