By Patrick Daley
Chronicle Staff Writer
"The artists coming through here are the lifeblood of this place, its identity," says Salem Art Works (or SAW) founder and director Anthony Cafritz. "The more varied the groups, the more artists that come through, the stronger SAW becomes."
And so, works by 22 artists - from Germany, France, Switzerland and the U.S. - will be showcased for the public on Saturday evening, August 15, from 6 to 9 p.m. at SAW, the dairy farm turned art center and sculpture park in Salem. It's free.
It's the culmination of the three-week Salem2Salem exchange program aligned with Schloss Salem, an art center in Germany. Mr. Cafritz, along with artists Peter Lundberg, Barbara Carris and and Barbara's husband, Bill, developed the idea for the program after a trip to Schloss Salem.
In its sixth year, the exchange alternates between SAW and Salem, Germany each summer. Artists are invited, a process overseen by Dr. Stephan Feucht of the Cultural Department for the Bodensee area in Germany, SAW Associate Director Denise Anderson, and Mr. Cafritz.
"There's an atmosphere of collaboration," Mr. Cafritz says. "It celebrates all media, and taking chances in new ways of working."
Salem2Salem allows freedom to create in a new environment around other artists, with option of taking advantage of the many instructors SAW regularly hosts. "We try to empower the individual to go beyond their boundaries," Mr. Cafritz says. "Push what you know."