The Artist Lodge originally started as a store called Fan*Alley.
Fan*Alley was opened by artist Eva Sowinski (of Critterosity) as a brick-and-mortar shop in Anaheim in the year 2015. It served as a haven for anybody looking for unique, quirky, or nerdy gifts and artwork created by local artists. In 2016, Eva decided to close down the shop, feeling that she wasn’t able to share the amazing art that surrounded her with others when she was stuck behind a store counter. She chose to take Fan*Alley on the road, and traveled around Southern California creating pop-up art events that encourage people to interact with art, and to meet a variety of different artists and creators of all skill levels and walks of life.
These pop-up art events were dubbed “The Artist Lodge,” and were created to have a positive, family-friendly, artist alley vibe to them, without the price and the insane crowds of a comic convention. She also coordinates and curates the Ground Zero Animation (GZA) Expo. The Artist Lodge is a pop-up artist showcase that is held a few times a year in Stanton at the Boys and Girls Club.
The Artist Lodge is modeled after the concept of an Artist Alley at a comic book convention. Our main goal is to provide up-and-coming artists a safe, affordable, professional, non-competitive, and family-friendly environment to network and sell their creations before they move on to bigger conventions.
Besides art vendors, the Artist Lodge also features a themed gallery at each show comprised of work by local artists, live music, live art, cosplay/life drawing, art workshops, and starting in 2020 we will be opening up “featured artist” applications, where one artist a show will be given the opportunity to have their own solo gallery with us.
We also love the fact that our events give art enthusiasts the opportunity to meet our artists in an intimate setting without having the hassle of overwhelming crowds or badge prices. We believe that art should be accessible to everyone, and we hope to provide a place where people can meet artists that they admire, or even find new artists that they may never have otherwise been exposed to.
In late 2017, Eva invited artist Marissa Suto (who started as a vendor in her pop-up shows in 2016) to take over as the Creative Curator of the Artist Lodge events.
At the end of 2018, Eva decided to retire the Fan*Alley title in order to focus on her own artwork and to spend more time coordinating the GZA Expo.
After Fan*Alley retired, and with Eva’s blessing, Marissa adopted The Artist Lodge as her own and continues to coordinate and curate the events under her company HumAlong Productions.
We would like to thank those that have supported us over the years, and we hope that you stick with us through the upcoming changes to The Artist Lodge brand. We’d also like to say hello and thank our new followers that have recently discovered us. We know that transitions can sometimes be rocky, but you have our promise that the ultimate goals and beliefs of The Artist Lodge remain the same, and we will continue to strive to improve and expand our shows in every way we can so that our artists and attendees can have the best experiences possible.
Head Coordinator and Curator
My name is Marissa Suto, and I am an artist and printmaker based in Orange County. I received my BA in General Studio Arts at Cal State University, Fullerton. I am a freelance curator, and I am the founder and artist behind my company HumAlong Productions, which I run out of my home studio. I am predominately a relief printmaker, and my work is quirky and has a dark humor to it. I’m absolutely nuts about art (of course!), Halloween, monsters, spooky stuff, old films, books, cooking, roller skating, and any and all forms of live and musical theatre. And obviously, I don’t like pictures of my face.
Hello! My name is Amber Suto, and… I’m not actually an artist.
Sorry, that’s probably not what you came here to read about.
If you’ve been to any of our Artist Lodge events over the past year or so, you might recognize me as “That One Weird Girl Who Hangs Out At The Gallery All Night”. I’ve also been known to knit the occasional piece. The rest of the time I’m working towards my MS in Environmental Studies at Cal State Fullerton or at my day job with the Santa Ana Zoo. As you’ve probably figured out, my love for animals has driven me towards a career in conservation. I also have a weakness for sales on used books and tiny succulents. If you drop by the gallery, feel free to say hi!