Fort Mason sits along a tidal cove in San Francisco. The Spanish built it as a military base in 1776 but when California became part of the union in 1850, the US military claimed the fort as their own. War happened. Funding left. History removed the original purpose of the fort and now the compound, a series of buildings and offices, pavilions and theaters, is used as an event space.
The large Festival Pavilion recently played host to the Renegade Craft Fair, a curated market for craft-makers, designers, and artists of all sorts.
The Renegade Craft Fair draws some amazingly talented folk to show and sell their work. The floor was packed with booths of dress makers, wood workers, jewelry makers, and poster makers.
At some craft fairs I’ve attended, you feel like you’re doing the artists a favor by being there, but these weren’t hobbyists, those that dabbled in craft — these were top artisans who had made a career out of their particular creative skill.
I spent a good portion of the afternoon at the Landland booth going through their bins of posters. Dan and Jessica, the folks behind Landland, have a very warm visual style — like comfort food in poster form.
I was especially stoked to chat with Dan Black of Landland, who was super kind to listen to me babble on about their work, the print making process, and possibly what I had for breakfast (Ed. note: I don’t eat breakfast).
There’s a warmth to an event like this. Hundreds of people who make stuff, awesome stuff — booths of said awesome stuff. The crowd, full of eyeballs, open to new work, in fact they’re there to see something new, something they can’t get at their local mall.
One of the main vendors I wanted to hit up was Kevin Tong. I’d been a fan for a long time and met him at Comic Con. Having him in San Francisco gave me another opportunity to buy a few more of his prints, and I couldn’t pass up a chance to chat with him in a more relaxed environment than the Comic Con floor.
The Renegade Craft Fair is about more than posters. It’s about bringing great artists together to showcase what they do and introduce their work to an audience eager for something different.
It gives the public a chance to find new art — a different outlet outside of the mainstream box stores and faceless online marketplaces. Your home, your body — cover them in what you love. What inspires you. These makers are some of the best out there and they’re doing unique work.
Make sure to check out The Renegade Craft Fair’s calendar to see if it’s going to be traveling to a city near you.
Photos provided by San Francisco based photographer Jared S. Kelly, a fine gentleman and a lovely chap.