The Lake Wales Art Festival turns 51

The Lake Wales Art Festival turns 51

by James Coulter

For nearly 40 years, Tim Peters and his wife have been carving natural landscapes and subjects on porcelain. They discard their containers, then carve them with a small knife when the material is completely air-dry like chalk. They then fire the pieces to make them solid and translucent, sometimes with a glaze of iridescent colors.

Like most good artists, Peters and his wife draw inspiration from the natural world. They traveled all over the country for 38 years and visited countless landscapes that inspired their work. However, rather than drawing inspiration directly from the landscape like a photograph, they are instead inspired indirectly, choosing to convey a vague impression.

“We don’t cut out a single scene anymore, but we remember where we’ve been and cut out what we felt there,” Peters said. “So this is what the top of the mountain might have looked like through the lens of time, emotion and maturity.”

Peters received the Best of Show award at the Lake Wales Art Festival last weekend for his porcelain prints. Of course, he felt “awesome” to receive the award, and he owes his success to his desire to always make a better work of art than the last. As someone who has been visiting the show for

“I love the people who come to this show,” he said. “I like the committee that put together the show, it’s a great show to do physically and financially.”

Peters was one of several dozen artists who attended the Lake Wales Art Festival last weekend. Presented by the Lake Wales Arts Council, the festival allowed artists and craftspeople of all types to congregate at Lake Wailes Park, showcase their work and enter its competition for various prizes.

David Hunter received the Judge’s Award for his etchings and sketches of Florida landscapes and wildlife. He worked as a full-time artist for 43 years, creating and teaching his craft.

He has been attending the festival for many years and enjoys the camaraderie between other artists. He considers himself more of a casual performer, so he didn’t really expect to win. Nevertheless, he appreciated his price.

“It feels good,” he said. “Art is something I’ve always done all my life, I never expected to do anything with it, so I make a living out of art.”

Voenlis Delgado was one of many artists who received an award of excellence and merit. He received his award for his metal art sculpture. As someone with a background in auto repair and fishing, he combines these two interests with sculptures of fish and other sea animals created from automobile and motorcycle parts. Some are painted with natural colors, others with automotive paint.

“I am a fisherman,” he says. “I love the ocean. I wanted to create something dedicated to the ocean. Life on the water and in my work inspired me. I’ve been in the motorcycle industry for a long time, a lot of shaped metal by hand and all that. It created more work.


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Reggie S. Williams